Saturday, April 19, 2014

Before Sunrise at the Grand Canyon

"Sunrise," the concierge said almost without batting an eyelash, responding to my question on the best time to see the canyon. "You definitely have to see it before sunrise," as I nodded and thanked her for the advise. And she was right. Many years after the road trip, the images of the Grand Canyon remain some of the best experiences in my bucket list-filled road trip along Route 66. 

A visit to the Grand Canyon was like a NatGeo experience, and seeing the natural wonder change in colors and hues throughout the day was definitely an experience like no other. For more on my experience at the Grand Canyon, check out my post in my other blog here at

Way before dawn, a cold, chilly air wakes you up as you prepare for a short drive to the Grand Canyon National Park. And as the sun slowly rises, the panoramic grandeur of the canyon comes into full view. It was December, and there were fewer visitors at the park than the normal summer crowds. The stillness of the morning adds to the experience as you make a personal connection, and as the sun rises ever higher, the shifting light reveals even more of the formations.

By mid-morning, the views along the South Rim becomes even more dramatic, with light and shadows revealing even more details of the Grand Canyon.

As you look for the best angle, you realize that each vantage point is simply better than the last. There just isn't any bad angle of the canyon.

Along the South Rim trail, one can see a handful of tourists enjoying the views. Take a seat along the edge of the canyon, with your feet dangling miles above the canyon floor to complete the experience.

The colors of the different layers of rocks are like a virtual palette, a continuing work in progress as the sun moves across the sky revealing even more colors. As you continue on your solitary walk, you can even hear the gentle sound of rustling water from miles below.

And you'll never know just what to expect along the trails, as one of the locals casually crosses my path. And just as quickly as she appeared, she's gone...

Dramatic views and pleasant surprises, all these at the Grand Canyon.  And she was right. You definitely have to see the Grand Canyon before sunrise...

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