We recently received a story from James Grundler about his hike through the Grand Canyon in his patched up Vibram Five Fingers Flows. It is the type of story enthusiastic Five Fingers fans share with us every day and we love passing on to our readers. But this story has a twist. Though James didn't mention it in his email, we stumbled onto the fact that James is an accomplished songwriter and the lead singer for the band Golden State(facebook page). His resume includes a long list of songs featured in television and film.
So after the jump, read about James' Grand Canyon adventure, and listen to the Golden State song "All Roads Lead Home" that was featured in the Luke Wilson movie, "Henry Poole Is Here" and on an Emmy nominated episode of "Deadliest Catch".
James on his Grand Canyon hike
I've had my Flows for 2 years now and I do everything in them from crossfitting at the gym, to short hikes, to very extensive hikes. The day before I left for the Grand Canyon trip, I went on a routine hike to prepare and my toe went through the side. I figured to myself, "I'm almost barefoot anyway, so a little tape should do the trick." And sure enough it did!
Six of us, including my 66 year old father, made the Grand Canyon trek. My Vibram Flows were the talk of everyone in the group including our family friend, Teed. On the drive to the Canyon, Teed continually asked me (with a smirk), "Are you really going down in those?"
It was a 3 day journey from the South Kaibab trail head (elevation 7260 ft) to the base (elevation 2480 ft) and back up to the top via the Bright Angel trail. On day 1, we hiked for 8 miles down a very steep decline. After more than 6 hours of intense hiking we arrived at the first camp site: Phantom Ranch.
Everyone thought my feet were going to be battered and bruised, but I was feeling great! All the other dudes in the group who were wearing "proper hiking boots" got blisters (mole skin anyone?). As we finally made it out of the belly of God's creation, I got such a high - not only because I made the journey but also because I made it in my Five Fingers.
I am very grateful I got the chance to do this hike not only with Derrick, Mike, and Andre, but to complete it with my Dad. Thanks guys for the adventure!
A few days after we completed the hike, I got a call from Teed. He said, "Hey what were those shoes called that you wore down in the Canyon?" I think we may have a changed man!
Great story, James! Thanks for sharing it with us. Nice work on the duct tape mod, too! Now, here's the video of James and Golden State singing "All Roads Lead Home".
Check out more of Golden State's great music here.
James also co-wrote the song "SAFE" with John Shanks that will be the first single on the new highly anticipated Westlife album.