Arizona Trip, Part 2, Antelope and Grand Canyon

Hello Everyone! Today I’m going to share the rest of our great trip to Arizona in March. You can read and see pictures of Sedona here. I am going to warn you, there are lots of pictures, so enjoy.

From Sedona, we made a day trip to Page, AZ where Antelope Canyon, Lake Powell and Horseshoe Bend are. Page is a three hour drive from Sedona and probably and hour and half from the Grand Canyon. If you are in the area, you should make the effort to visit.

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The walk towards the canyon

My daughter had seen pictures of Antelope Canyon, so seeing it was high on her list. Antelope Canyon is a slot canyon with two parts, Upper and Lower. The Upper is more popular, probably because it’s more accessible. We went to the lower canyon, which is very narrow in some spots. You walked down the road to the canyon and entered it from the bottom, then walked up and out. The canyons are on Navajo land and you can only go on a guided tour in both canyons. We used Dixie Ellis Tours and Julie was our guide and she was awesome.  Before we went in, she showed everyone how to adjust their cameras for the best pictures. The following pictures were taken on my iPhone 6 in Chrome mode. Where you see the purples in the picture, the colors were a deep red. Most of the pictures were taken looking up towards the canyon opening.

I’ll let the pictures do most of the talking. It truly was awe inspiring!

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Start of tour, walking into canyon

AC 4AC 9AC 11AC 14AC 15AC 16Antelope Canyon is known for it’s light beams. I think we were lucky to see one, because they are prevalent April through September. The secret is that Julie was behind the rock and throwing sand up into the opening so you capture the beam on your camera.

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Periodically, we had to climb up.

AC 21This is looking back from where we just came from. You can see how narrow the canyon was in some places.

This is the exit. In the picture on the right, you can’t really tell that there is anything there. Julie told us that her ancestors used the canyon to hide in when necessary. She also said that as kids, they would jump over the opening. Please take the time to visit Antelope Canyon, you won’t regret it.

While we were in Page, we went to the dam on Lake Powell in the Glen Falls National Recreation Area. There is a nice visitor center where you can tour the dam if you want to.

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Do you see the boats at the bottom of the canyon? That’s where they start the rafting trips of the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon.

Our next stop that day was Horseshoe Bend, just outside of Page.

IMG_3212If you read Part 1

, you know my daughter liked sitting or standing on the edge. The Grand Canyon didn’t bother me from a height perspective, but this place did. I don’t know if it because there were a lot of people around on the edge or that there were no rails. I did get close enough though, to take this picture.

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You can see one of the rafts on the shore. Can you see the monster face? We were there about 3:00 in the afternoon. Every picture I took, had the face.

This was a long day, but worth it. We spent the next day hiking around Sedona, then the day after that we moved on to the Grand Canyon.

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Our first view of the canyon

We have visited many National Parks and have learned that it’s worth going to the Visitor Center and talking to a ranger. My daughter wanted good spots to take sunset and sunrise pictures and star pictures. The ranger we talked to gave us some good information, especially on the most popular sites for these so we could avoid them.

We stayed at the Yavapai Lodge in the park. There is a bus system that took you all around. To see the sunset on the first night, we took the bus to Pima Point, past the two most popular points.

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Beautiful watching the sunset and seeing the canyon changing with the light.

The next day, was our only full day. We made the most of it. We averaged hiking about 4.5 miles on all the other days, we did almost 7.5 that day. On our way to the canyon from Sedona, we stopped in Flagstaff to have lunch and do a little shopping. In one the shops, the owner told us to walk down into the canyon for about 10 to 15 minutes and we would get a different perspective. The ranger also told us where to look for the Native American drawings on the trail. We hiked a little bit on the Bright Angel Trail early in the morning.

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We usually were just ahead of the crowds. Another beautiful day!

 

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Sitting on the edge again!

 

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Looking up at the cliff drawings. Most people walked on by and didn’t even notice them. Another reason to talk to the rangers to find out interesting points and things to see.

After we did our 30 minute hike, we shopped around in the Canyon Village, then got on a bus to head towards Hermits Rest to do a little hiking. We had traveled this route the night before, so we knew where we wanted to get off.

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This map shows the west end of the South Rim of the Canyon. We got off the bus at Marikopa Point and hiked to Mojave Point, where we caught the bus back to the village.

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Looking towards Hopi Point from the trail

 

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Parts of the trail were right on the edge of the rim.

 

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What a lunch time view!

We never got tired of the views!

That evening, we drove to Desert View on the east side of the south rim to watch the sunset. We stopped at the Tusayan Ruins, then went to the Desert View Watchtower.

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There were excellent views from the Watchtower of the Colorado River and points east into more desert like terrain, which we had driven through on our way to Page.

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There were lots of people at the Watchtower, so we drove back to Navajo Point to watch the sunset.

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This is a Pano I took. My daughter’s getting her camera set up to take tripod pictures.

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I edited it so I can get it printed, you noticed I cut her out.

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If you left too early, you missed the incredible sky after the sun set!

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The next morning, our last day, we got up early for Sunrise pictures. We were out early enough to get star pictures, too. And it was cold, about 38 degrees.

 

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Sunrise over the Canyon

 

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This is one of my favorite pictures of the whole trip. I could have stayed longer because I think the light would have gotten even more spectacular, but we had been in the cold for almost 2 hours at this point. We had breakfast, packed and headed back to Phoenix, but we had to get our picture with the entrance sign before we left.

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There was a family with young kids setting up a tripod to get their family picture and they offered to take one of the three us. Thanks!

Our last stop for the trip was at the Montezuma Castle National Monument.

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We had lunch and toured the bottom of the ruins. The cliff dwelling was built by the Sinagua people over 800 years ago. You could see the rooms on the different levels in the cliff.

This was such an awesome trip. Thanks for sticking with me this long. If you ever get the chance to visit Arizona and this part of the country, I would highly recommend it.

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2 Responses to Arizona Trip, Part 2, Antelope and Grand Canyon

  1. Pingback: Arizona Travel, Part 1, Sedona | The Quilting Nook

  2. Lydia says:

    The photos are amazing. What a great trip, we hope to make it out that way at some point.

    Like

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