Well here it is, the big enchilada, The Grand Canyon. There is not much else to say about the Grand Canyon that has not already been said. After all, The Grand Canyon is one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. Except perhaps that most people don’t experience The Grand Canyon drinking wine out of a box in a RV park with two cats like I did.
The size of the Grand Canyon is almost beyond comprehension. To fathom the enormous volume and vast expansive depth of the canyon one has to see the vistas with their own eyes. The canyon is one mile deep, 18 miles wide at its broadest, and 277 miles long. The landscape is stunning and left me breathless. Or maybe the biking at 7000 feet above sea level was what left me breathless. I had to remember to put down the camera, and live in the moment, soaking in the panoramic views.
To fully appreciate the canyon, one must hike down to the canyon floor. Most folks don’t get much further than the visitor center and the first canyon viewpoint. The main visitor center reminded me of Clearwater Beach Florida, with people driving around slowly in parking lots looking for parking spaces that don’t exist. I felt as if I was the only person there speaking English. People from around the world were here to see the Grand Canyon. In the campground I helped a family from Germany set up their RV. They rented a RV and this was their first night in their coach. Their English was good, much better than my German. My mastery of the German language came from my cycling trips to Austria and Switzerland, and consisted of only two sentences. The first sentence was “Groses Bier bitte”, or large beer please. The second was “Eine weitere Bitte”, one more please. Those sentences were the only two I needed to get through both biking tours.
Near the west end of the park I saw trail mules in their corral. People who are too lazy to hike down into the canyons ride the mules instead. The mules all looked pretty chilled out to me. Carrying Joe and Jenny Tourist down into and back out of the canyon requires a laid back animal. My excuse for not hiking down into the Grand Canyon was that I don’t like to leave the cats unattended in the RV for more than a few hours. I am now wondering what the cost of the mule trip would have been.
I remember my mother reading a book to me called Brighty of the Grand Canyon, the story of a real life burro who lived in the Grand Canyon. My parents took my family to the north rim of the Grand Canyon when I was 12 years old. I remember being in awe of the Grand Canyon back then just as I am now. I am wondering if my mother is now looking down on me from heaven and smiling as I experience the Grand Canyon again 48 years later.
For those of you who are curious, here is link describing the Grand Canyon and the other six natural wonders of the world.