Saturday, February 11, 2012
Lower Antelope Canyon
LOWER ANTELOPE CANYON
The following were the factors we considered when we were making a choice as to which canyon we visit:
Upper Antelope Canyon- crowded, hard to take in the curves and contours of the canyon to ourselves. Needs reservation to tour this place.
Lower Antelope Canyon - uncrowded ( maybe twenty times less popular), does not need reservation to tour this place.
Upper Antelope Canyon - $35/person for a limited 50 minutes tour of Upper Antelope Canyon (1.5 hour includes pick-up and drop-off), $46 per person at primetime (11:30- very crowded). Price is $80/person for a photography tour which is for about 2 hours inside the canyon.
Lower Antelope Canyon - $26/person either with a tour or independent with photographers pass, for 2 hours inside the canyon. :)
Since we preferred a more silent and challenging walk, we decided to explore Lower Antelope Canyon instead, where we would have greater chance of savoring the interesting sweeps and the magical curves of the rocks all to ourselves. For lesser price, we can spend longer time at Lower Antelope.
Here is a little bit summary of our Lower Antelope experience:
On our way to Page from Grand Canyon, I called Ken's Tours of Lower Antelope Canyon telling them we are coming from Grand Canyon and we needed their address, and I was told, "we do not have an address ma'am, but you will find us 6 miles East of Page, you take 98 East." I was like, "huh? I hope we found you". Thankfully, our GPS helped us get to Lower Antelope Canyon parking without any problem, I simply entered "Lower Antelope Canyon".
Guide Showing Us the Entrance to Lower Antelope Canyon
We requested for an independent tour, so the guide only showed us to the trailhead. When he welcomed us to the entrance, I had to ask, "Is this it?" And he replied, "yes, this is where you will enter."
Entering Antelope Canyon
From above, Lower Antelope Canyon is just but a crack in the ground. The excitement and joy started to take over on the first sight of what is below the ground.
After the First Steel Rung Staircase Landing
Notice in the picture above, that after the first landing, there is another staircase.
More Staircase After the First Landing
Even with the installation of stairways, the walk at Lower Antelope Canyon poses more difficulty than the walk at Upper Antelope Canyon. The walk at Lower Antelope Canyon is longer, narrower, and there were few spots were there was hardly any footing.
Maneuvering Lower Antelope Canyon
Thankfully, these areas which hardly had any footing were not that long, therefore, they actually added more fun and adventure to the walk. But there are some parts of the trails too which were wide enough
and there are several canyon rooms also which gives us greater space to stop and to take in all the dancing motion of these swaying curves lit by the afternoon sun.
Wider Room at Lower Antelope Canyon
Lower Antelope Canyon we believe still goes a long way, but at the end of the trail, they decided not to install a staircase anymore, thus, it is only possible to explore that area with some rock climbing and toproping skills. At the end of the trail, the climb out requires taking several flights of stairs. However, the child in us decided to go back the same route we entered so that we can enjoy the canyon once again and entertain the child in us.
Me, Practising my Modeling Skills :) @ Lower Antelope Canyon
For the most part we were inside Lower Antelope Canyon, we felt like we had the canyon all to ourselves. There were other tourists of course, but the canyon is long enough for us to spread apart and have our small private spaces. Occasionally, we bumped into each other, or we had to stop because someone was taking a picture or was composing a picture, but for the most part, our time at the canyon was with our much desired isolation. Lovely.
For the length of time we stayed at Lower Antelope Canyon, I do not know how much more would it cost us at Upper Antelope Canyon, if it is even possible.
For more information on Antelope Canyon, please visit this site http://www.navajonationparks.org/htm/antelopecanyon.htm