The Grand Canyon (Travel Series #4)

The Highs

Renee: It was always on my bucket list to “go out West and see the stars.” The first night we were there, it was so clear and there are basically NO lights out there, so the stars were unlike anything I’ve ever seen. Hundreds of thousands of twinkling lights…I cried. I remember thinking, “This is the life you’ve always wanted to live…you’re doing it,” and just felt endless waves of gratitude. It was an astoundingly life-affirming moment for me.

Also the canyon itself is literally breathtaking. I cried when I saw it, too.

To make a long story short, I spent a large portion of my time here (happy) crying.

Nick: After hearing about the Park for so long, finally getting to see how massive and spectacular it was in person was an incredible experience on its own. It’s (literally) larger than life.

Another high: I hiked part of the Bright Angel Trail with Renee, but then ran part of it solo down to the point where you can see the Colorado River, which was also amazing to actually SEE in person, that close.

The Not-so-highs

Renee: It was almost…too magnificent. Sometimes it even gave me a little anxiety because of how beautiful and vast and purely ancient it is. It was overwhelming to feel so small and inconsequential and…mortal in the face of something so timeless and astounding. It’s a good thing to confront, but woooo it gave me the shivers.

Also, one night Nick hot-boxed the tent with the WORST farts I’ve EVER smelt, and it was too cold outside to escape. I mean it though. To this day. The Worst. Farts. Ever.

Nick: Honestly can’t think of any. I guess my only not-so-high would be Renee lying about the farts. I wouldn’t do that. I never fart.

What We Learned

Renee: An intense amount of history about the earth and rocks and sediment and tectonic plates. When I was a kid, I was always so annoyed when my parents would stop to read every sign in a display or museum. I am that person now (so “what I’ve learned” is that I am my parents now. Gulp).

I also learned that if you get up at or before dawn, make coffee, and drive from the campsite to the Canyon’s edge, you’ll be one of the first people there, and you can actually experience the Canyon in a tranquil moment of peace and quiet before the throngs arrive :)

Nick: I learned that the Grand Canyon IMAX movie is not about geology or the formation of the Canyon…it’s about a bunch of people floating down the CO River, played by terrible actors, and was hilariously bad. Would safely say you can skip it unless cheesy acting and strangely focused story lines are your thing.

Also, it’s about 1,000 degrees hotter at the bottom of the Canyon that it is on the Rim. Just FYI if you’re headed to those lower elevations during the spring or Summer…bring extra water and be prepared!