Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Home Sweet San Diego For the Thanksgiving Holidays?


The countdown to my week long thanksgiving week holiday begins....4...3....2.....1....then, off to our Grand Hike? Ahhhh, if only the weather would cooperate with our plans.
South Kaibab Trail, Grand Canyon National Park
The slopes of Grand Canyon right now are covered with snow from the snow storm that blasted the area the past 2 weekends. Snow is very pretty. In fact, I love the desert landscape covered with snow. Snow adds more tranquility to an already quiet and beautiful desert landscape.
Navajo Loop Trail, Bryce Canyon National Park, UT ( Thanksgiving 2010 )
But hiking Grand Canyon's 16-18 miles with 6000-7000 ft change in elevation on very steep, snowy and icy trail? 
 Narrow Trail with Several Thousands Feet Drop Off at Grand Canyon
Can you imagine the narrow and steep trail above with snow? We usually do not give up hiking on snow such as our hike at Harding Icefield in Alaska.
Hike To End of Harding Icefield Trail, Kenai Fjords National Park, AK
However, despite steep, icy, snow-covered and rocky trail, there was no drop-off at Harding Icefield Trail. If we slip and fall, there was no danger of falling down the cliff. Hiking Grand Canyon is a different story, the vertical drop off greets you at the start of the trail which does not disappear in the hike until the river. Though we got snowshoes and crampons for an icy hike, but we don't feel technically equipped and knowledgeable enough to hike Grand Canyon Rim to Rim on heavy snow days :( Though my heart cries to explore this mind-boggling desert landscape at the Grand Circle once again, but then, the weather reality bites right now. 
This weekend, we are expecting more rain which means more snow at higher elevation. According to weather forecast, Grand Canyon will have snow from Saturday to Tuesday! It means my dream of hiking Grand Canyon Rim to Rim will have to wait until the trail and weather conditions get better. So, where to this thanksgiving week vacation? Is it too late now for me to change plans and look for cheap holidays? Though I must say that we actually have greater chances of finding cheaper holidays from the last minute deals. But then again, I really have no complaints staying home for the holidays in San Diego. After-all, San Diego is one of the most popular places for vacation and holidays. Being bordered by the ocean and the mountains with the desert in between, there is so much to explore. We could go hiking in the nearby pine and oak forested mountains, 
 Doane Pond, Palomar Mountain, San Diego County
or take advantage of the cooler weather to hike and explore the nearby rugged but inspiring desert landscapes, or take a 4-hr whale watching cruise, 
 Humpback Whale off the Coast of San Diego
or just simply enjoy the local amenities and be like a tourist in home sweet San Diego.

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  1. How wonderful that you will have the whole week off! I love the colorful picture of Doane Pond. Have fun wherever you spend your holiday. :)

  2. Never thought of snow on all that red rock. Take a hike for me while I'm waiting till the hunters are out of the woods.

  3. never hiked the canyons in snow, but did do Taos Sky valley (before the sky season)...it was awesome!

  4. When I think of desert I never think of snow, until now. I always learn something when I read your posts.

  5. Wow, snow on the desert. Didn't think of that. Must be a totally awesome sight. Your photos are incredible. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Have a great week off! It sounds like you will have a great time no matter what you decide to do.

  7. with all the joys in San Diego I have been reading in the pages of your life Betchai, I really would love to one sweet day visit..no stay! there....aaahhh wonderful photos as always...that last one spells for nature what J-O-Y in its pure form is...(",)

  8. Have a good time wherever you decide to go. You are so adventurous so anywhere you go will be fun. Looking forward to your report.