Thursday, April 12, 2012
Zion Canyon, Zion National Park, UT
It has been almost a week since we escaped civilization, and how we loved our journey to the Wild Wild West. We left San Diego early Saturday morning, March 30, 2012, for a desert get-away to Page, Arizona. The drive to Page from San Diego was 9 hours (without stop), but we divided the long drive by stopping by at Zion National Park.At Zion, we took a short uphill hike to Zion Canyon Overlook. More about Zion Canyon Overlook hike in later post.
Rainbow Bridge National Monument, Utah
After Zion National Park, we drove directly to Page for 2 nights stay. The next day, we took a boat tour of Lake Powell and to Rainbow Bridge National Monument, again, more about the Rainbow Bridge in later post.
Lake Powell, Page, AZ
On our 3rd day, still at Page, we did another short warm-up hike to Horseshoe Bend.
Horseshoe Bend, Page, AZ
We had been to Horseshoe Bend several times, but it was always inspiring to see this place. There were a lot of wildflowers in Horseshoe Bend trail. I will share more about the wildflowers and other finds at Horseshoe Bend and Page later. Notice that all pictures here have "me" in them, well, because this post is more of itinerary summary of our desert get-away.
Wupatki National Monument, Flagstaff, AZ
After Horseshoe Bend, we continued our drive to Grand Canyon National Park but we stopped at Wupatki National Monument and Sunset Crater National Monument in Flagstaff, Arizona. After lunch in Flagstaff, we proceeded directly to Grand Canyon National Park, where we stayed for 2 nights.
Cedar Ridge, South Kaibab Trail, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ
The next day, we woke up early to catch the earliest Hiker's Express Bus that regularly leaves Bright Angels Lodge at 6:00 am. About 6:45 am, we started our hike down the Grand Canyon via the South Kaibab Trail. Again, more of our one day Grand Canyon Hike from the Rim (South Kaibab trailhead) down to the river then back up via Bright Angels Trail later.
Inner Grand Canyon Gorge and The Colorado River, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ
The National Park advises against doing a strenuous hike in one day such as this, however, applying for backpacking permit takes a long wait. If you know your limits and physical fitness level, this hike is very enjoyable even if done fast paced in one day, filled with ohhs and ahhs in every turn. It was such pure joy and happiness down the river and seeing the deepest layer of rocks of the Grand Canyon. The next day, though our legs may be tired from the 17 mile hike, 5000 ft descent/ascent, but definitely, we still had the energy to enjoy the Grand Canyon from the rim.
Sunrise as Seen a Few Steps from our Room
On our last day, while checking out at El Tovar Hotel, the front desk asked me, "are you planning to see more of the Grand Canyon before you leave the park?" I replied, "Maybe, but I plan to go shopping for Grand canyon shirts and hoodies to remind me of our beautiful Grand Canyon hike down to the river yesterday!" And the front desk clerk replied, "Oh my! and you're back up now! You have not only seen the Grand Canyon but you really experienced it! You definitely have seen more than what 90+ % of tourists had seen in this park! You deserve to go shopping, enjoy!"
Facing South Kaibab Trail from Mather Point, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ
And I did enjoy my Grand Canyon shopping. For photo opps, before leaving the park, I wore the shirt above that says " I made it down and back up again!" And a hoodie that says, "HIKE, move your feet and your soul will follow" - Grand Canyon National Park.
My New GC Hoodie
"Hike....move your feet and your soul will follow"-- I find this so true, the beauty and grandeur of nature I find in hiking always bring a nourishment to my soul. I hope to continue to stay healthy and active so I can hike and move my feet where my soul will follow.
Wishing everyone a blessed Holy Week and a happy Easter.