Now we are heading south on the Tonto Trail, at mile 1.4, continuing our slow climb up into Mineral Canyon. The Colorado River has disappeared, but as we have continued to climb, now about 700 feet above the river, the temples and buttes rising up on the north side of the river have come into view. The most prominent, pyramid shaped feature is Vishnu Temple, and it will remain in view, dominating the scene from across the river for many miles to come.
If you turn the panorama to look up Mineral Canyon, you will see Coronado Butte growing a bit larger as we head in its direction, deeper into Mineral Canyon. The wash in Mineral Canyon, the whitish, dry creekbed twisting down below Coronado Butte, is cutting through the Grand Canyon Supergroup formations that form the floor of Mineral Canyon: the sometimes bright red Hakatai Shale, and the stair-stepped Bass Formation beneath it. Turn and look straight down within the panorama and scattered about at your feet are purplish plates of the Bass Formation, all over 1.2 billion years old.