Flower House Visits the Grand Canyon
When I was much younger my grandparents lived in Arizona, south of Tuscon. We visited them every year and I did some sightseeing in that part of Arizona. My travels never took me to the Grand Canyon.
Finally, The Grand Canyon!
This year, for part of my spring break from school, I decided to visit my sister in Flagstaff. I had never been there and wanted to see what there was to see. It wasn’t until nearly my departure time when I looked at a map and saw she was that close to the Grand Canyon. We hatched a plan to get there. My sister had only been there once and then stayed up on the rim.
We started our Grand Canyon adventure by driving to Williams, AZ, where we got on the Grand Canyon Railway. It’s a former stub line of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad. Now privately owned, the railroad is dedicated to ferrying tourists, like myself, to the Grand Canyon. The train travels pretty slow, but it was a relaxing ride and on the way there our hostess prepared us by going over the maps and features we would find there.
We decided to walk down into the canyon first, then hike out, and then see how much time we had left to explore the attractions on the rim. After getting off the train, we oriented ourselves with the map and headed to the trail head for the Bright Angel Trail.
My first view of the Grand Canyon was every bit as amazing and impressive as expected. We were there on day when the skies were clear, there was a light breeze, and it was cool enough that we were glad we had our jackets along.
Hiking Into The Grand Canyon
We started down the trail, meeting people coming up along the way. The people we met were huffing and puffing for the most part. We took that as our warning not to go too far. My sister and I are 57 and 59 years old, fairly healthy and in fairly good shape, but we really didn’t want to over-extend ourselves.
We got down to a place where there was a little stub trail leading to one side, and a sign pointing to the main trail. From that point, we identified how far further down the trail we would go, and NO FURTHER!!!
The last few hundred yards we went had a steeper descent, and thus a steeper ascent, so it was good we had set that limit. The hike out took us longer that the hike in, and we stopped to rest a few times.
When we reached the rim, we oriented with the map again and decided which of the attractions we most wanted to see. We explored Hopi House and walked around in the El Tovar hotel. We didn’t want to spend our time sitting in a restaurant waiting for our meal. With our last bit of time, we walked part of the way along the Trail of Time.
The exhausted travelers in our party hoped to nap on the train ride back to Williams. There was a full schedule of entertainment, so so napping. We walked to the dining car for a cup of tea and a glass of wine (not saying who had what). After skipping lunch we were seriously hungry. We brought along nuts and an apple to snack on, but it wasn’t enough.
When we arrived back in Flagstaff, we found that my brother in law had made ham soup with vegetables, all gluten free with no legumes. That was some seriously delicious soup after a long and hungry day.
Our Next Visit…
We would both love to visit the Grand Canyon again. There are other points of access we’d like to try. I want to go on one of the helicopter adventures into the canyon. It would be great to stay in one of the lodges there. The simplest change we’d like to make would be to drive ourselves there and skip the time on the train. This would also eliminate the hard scheduled departure time and give us more time to explore.