Sunday, August 8, 2010

Day 8: Williams, AZ to Williams, AZ via The Grand Canyon

Miles Traveled: 160
Travel Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes on the road; 11 hours at the Canyon
Pictures Taken: 255

The one and only thing we did today was see the Grand Canyon!  It was hotter than expected (though much cooler than the canyon floor).  The heat, combined with the altitude meant we were exhausted very quickly.  Water was available for purchase (and at $1.99 for a 1.5L bottle it was a bargain) but it was room temperature, which quickly warmed to near-boiling.

We were at the South Rim of the park, which appears to be the more popular rim.  I assume that the pictures I took below look nearly identical to everyone else's photos of the canyon, but it was my first time there and I was in awe.  I just kept snapping away. (I'm writing the summary first then just posting the pictures below so you don't have to wade through them if you don't want to.)

We took shuttle buses for the majority of the time, which was fine until the late afternoon when they were standing room only.  The main thing we learned on the buses is that the ratio of Americans to non-Americans at the Grand Canyon is approximately 1:1.  At one point on the bus, we heard conversations in no less than five languages at once (none of them English)!

Because I had toted along my tripod, I was asked at almost every viewpoint to take someone else's picture - I need to start charging!  We did see some wildlife along the rim - including a cute little squirrel and a very nonplussed deer.

At the end of the day, we drove about 36 miles beyond the entrance point to the Eastern entrance point to the Watchtower area to watch the sunset.  The guidebooks all claimed it would be less crowded.  They lied.  It was quite crowded and VERY noisy - although we noted that the only loud, obnoxious children running around were the American children.  Sigh.  But the sunset was beautiful!  There were clouds and a far-off storm across the canyon which made for some glorious colors!

We arrived back in Williams at 9:30 pm and pretty much crashed.  Tomorrow we're off to California!

This is Kolb Studio - once a haven for artists, now a gift shop.

The Colorado River looking a bit muddy.


Hopi House

The Watchtower


  1. You have a great eye. Hope the rest of your trip goes well. I hope California doesn't disappoint you. If you have a chance stop in Flagstaff, very pretty. Are you making a loop, going through Bryce Canyon?

  2. Okay I am curious....what lenses did you take on your trip? You mentioned a tripod and that sparked my interest in what photography equipment you use. I have 3 I like to take on trips and am just curious if you have one or many you used to take your shots. Are you a professional photographer? You have an amazing eye!