Tuesday, July 27, 2010


“Grand Canyon – one of Earth’s most powerful, inspiring landscapes – overwhelms our senses”, these words from the visitors guide published by the National Park Service was exactly how I felt when we got our first glimpse of the canyon from Mather Point on the South Rim at 3:19 p.m. on Sunday, June 27, 2010.
It was an astounding experience. The Canyon was so beautiful and so majestic, beyond my imagination and yet so familiar from having seen documentaries and looking at images in printed materials. Here we are, at the Grand Canyon, one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Nearly 2 billion years of geologic history, layers of limestone exposed, eroded by natural elements of water and wind, so gentle yet so powerful.
If the Grand Canyon is a sculpture garden, then God must be the best artist to create such masterpiece.
Borrowing the words of wisdom from Forest Gump, "when standing at the Grand Canyon, the view is so vast, as far as the eye can see, I don't know where the earth ends and where heaven begins!".
Driving along Hermit Road, after a few stops at the overlooks, I decided that I should put away my camera and just enjoyed the views. There are only great photos of the canyon, no matter what camera or the person taking the photos. The canyon is like a gorgeous woman who needs no artificial make-up or fancy dresses. A person could close his eyes and still take great photos of this amazing landscape.
"How could it possible be so beautiful", it was the thoughts that kept running thru my mind.
The view from any of the nine overlooks was spectacular, breath-taking in literally sense. At times I felt as if I was floating on air, flying over the canyon, touching the colorful layers of limestones, up-close and personal with the dramatic view of the rock formations, the multihued stone walls, and dipping my toes into the Colorado Rivers, thousand miles deep below the canyon. The Rivers looks like a tiny stream when standing at the edge of the canyon but it is nearly 350 feet wide, meanders west through the Canyon.
At 7:35 p.m. we followed the crowd into Canyon Café as it was time for dinner. We were hungry since we only had a sandwich at the Meteor Crater, almost 7 hours ago. We decided to get overnight accomodation at Yavapai Lodge, a motel-style lodge at the eastern end of the Canyon, approximately ¼ mile from the South Rim. I learned that the word Yavapai means “sun people” in Paiute, a group of nomadic native people associated with the Grand Canyon.
We planned to get up early for the sunrise views when the colors of the rock deepen dramatically among the layers of the canyon walls. Well, we did not get up early but the next morning, at 7:28 a.m. the view was still much more beautiful than we could expect. Since it was early, at one of the points, we almost had the whole canyon all for ourselves, without any other visitors around.
We left the canyon at around 8:50 a.m. on Monday, June 28th, with a promise that we would be back soon to visit the North Rim and stay longer. Grand Canyon National Park will be on our top-10 list of the best and the most memorable places.
Above is the view from our room at Yavapai Lodge.

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