The American Southwest, part nine

Well now that I’ve muddled through my marital frustrations and a three-person Thanksgiving, first time ever having Thanksgiving dinner with less than 10 people, I’m back to reminiscing our glorious road trip. Despite all the covid fears, I’m really glad we were able to carve out this time for the three of us. It looks like we’ll be home for the foreseeable future, so I am grateful for these wonderful memories.

Now back to that flat tire. Blue Eyes checked on the car tire early the next morning, day 13 of 16, and indeed it was completely flat. He called AAA and they promptly sent someone out to our hotel, in Page, AZ to fill the tire and recommend a tire shop nearby. He was back to the hotel by 10am with a replacement tire with the same wear pattern as the rest. Easy peasy!

Before departing Page, we took a drive down to Glen Canyon Dam, Lake Powell, and Horseshoe Bend.

Glen Canyon Dam
Lake Powell
The Colorado River
Horseshoe Bend

It was a lovely walk out to the Horseshoe Bend lookout, approaching 80 degrees late morning on this November Arizona day. Unfortunately there were quite a few people there and my fear of heights is magnified the more people there are, especially when only a small area of the lookout had a railing. I just don’t trust people around heights. Some people are fearless and do very dumb things. Anyway… it was beautiful.

Even though our ultimate destination for the day was only a couple hours east, we had decided the day before that we wanted to see more of the Grand Canyon, so we headed to the north rim. Although there were lots of interesting looking sights along the route, like Navajo Bridge, and old cliff dwellings, we knew we’d never make it to the Grand Canyon and eventually back up to Utah if we didn’t stay the course. We had lost an hour of light with the time change the weekend before and it wasn’t helping with our sightseeing.

Unlike the south rim, the north rim of the Grand Canyon was virtually deserted. The lodge was closed down for the season and there were more deer near the cabins than people. There were maybe a half dozen cars in the parking lot and we encountered virtually no one. Along with the far fewer people on this rim, there are also far fewer railings. At one point I just sat down at the abandoned lodge outdoor dining tables and watched the hawks and ravens circle the canyon. Very majestic!

Grand Canyon Lodge North Rim cabins with amazing views.
A super scary and narrow path with no handrails. This is where I turned around and headed back.
North Rim
Beautiful November day
The canyon seems to go on forever
Lots of buffalo on our drive out

When we finally made it to our destination in Springdale, Utah (just outside Zion National Park) that evening, we could barely find a parking space in the lot. Our hotel was 100% booked. Not 100% of a 50% Covid capacity, no. It was completely full, every room. I didn’t even think that was legal. So much for Covid.

11 thoughts on “The American Southwest, part nine

  1. Pingback: Numinous | rfljenksy – Practicing Simplicity

    • There are lots of buffalo/bison out west, herds and herds. We saw a whole field at the Grand Tetons a few years back. There were quite a few at the Grand Canyon north rim on our way out at sunset. Same with elk and deer. I am most enamored with moose! We don’t have those in Oregon.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Horseshoe Bend now has a kind of scafolding with rails. Kind of sad actually, but much safer. I still remember a guy coming right up behind me when I was on the edge. I pulled away and left after that. People certainly do stupid things. Very true.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, the scaffolding covers that one flat part, but there’s nothing to the sides of it! Of course that makes for a better view, but a much scarier one, I agree! A young woman with no mask literally brushed against me when we were at an area without railing and I freaked. Her boyfriend thought I was upset because they weren’t wearing masks, which so wasn’t the case. I had my mask on, but no mask is going to protect me from my fear of heights! That fear is sometimes irrational, but very real!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, we were surprised and disturbed. The whole Zion National Park area was swamped. All the other hotels we stayed at were at 20-50% capacity, even in other cities in Utah. Not sure how Springdale was rationalizing it. The volume of people at Zion solidified our desire to get back to the relative safety of home.

      Liked by 1 person

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