Just so you know, we work really hard to be goofy and clever with our blog titles, so we hope you enjoy them as much as we do.
We know you are here to read about and see photographic evidence of our adventures at the Grand Canyon. But if you just want the cliff notes (get it?), it was beautiful, there was a large hole Doug was not fond of, it snowed, Doug spent the week at Starbucks, and there were elk and ravens for days!
Oh and apparently we missed the memo on stocking up on toilet paper, so you know we have fun times ahead now…
Anyway, on to why you are here. The Grand Canyon.
Let’s just say, it is a bucket list item for many and the Disneyland of National Parks for good reason. It is amazing. We were literally welcomed into the park on a busy Saturday afternoon by a herd of elk grazing on both sides of the road. And you know, doing their part to show off while slowly crossing the road. Our campground was quiet, full of trees (which was unexpected), and beautiful. We had a great view all week. Unfortunately, the internet was awful. This is why Doug pretty much lived at Starbucks for the week.
We went in without knowing much about the place. We had no idea Grand Canyon Village had a grocery store, restaurants, coffee shops, hotels, and more. So it was a pleasant surprise to enjoy cinnamon multigrain pancakes at Bright Angel Lodge Restaurant or vegetarian tamales and half a chicken at Yovapai Lodge Restaurant.
We spent the first day at Desert View, which is a 22 mile trek away from the Visitor Center. The drive is well worth it. Well, for everyone but Doug. Doug doesn’t like heights. Doug stayed away from the edge and stayed in the car as Katie explored all the lookout points. He didn’t ruin the experience for everyone else. Be like Doug.
Here is how everyone, but Doug, spent the week!
We explored the small exhibit at Visitor Center and the neat rocks outside. Katie of course grabbed coffee at a cafe in the bike rental building. She did that a few times during the week. The cafe was allowing reusable containers, so that was a plus too.
We checked out Mather Point and walked along the Rim Trail a bit. Katie was far more into it than the boys.
We drove out to Yavapai Point and Geology Museum and ducked in to check out the exhibit. Turns out it was a Ranger talk and the boys were being too loud, so we had to duck right back out. We actually drove out there to explore the Trail of Time. It is super neat and totally engaged the kiddos a little.
We rode the shuttle a lot, because the kids love being able to ride without being strapped into a seat. We took it to the Bright Angel Lodge and to the Visitor Center. Driving is easier and parking lots were never full while we were there. The shuttle is still amazing and their system works well for being on time.
Oh and it snowed twice! One of those days, we played in the snow and drove to the Bright Angel Lodge, where we discovered cinnamon multigrain pancakes. It was magical.
The second time was Katie’s birthday! We walked a half mile in the snow to catch a bus, which we barely missed and had to wait 15 minutes in the freezing cold for the next one, then we rode said bus to the Bright Angel Lodge for those cinnamon pancakes and coffee. After food, we strolled along the Rim Trail for a bit, but it was cold, so we decided to head home. As we walked up to the bus stop a bus drove right up to greet us. It was perfect. But the walk from the bus stop to our campsite was another half mile in the snow. And this time it was uphill! HA!
Otherwise, our days were spent at home. Well, except for Friday when Doug took the kids to a playground so Katie could clean. We really enjoyed ourselves. It was almost like we were on vacation and not paying attention to current affairs, which obviously, given the current toilet paper situation, is going to bite us in the ass. Literally.
Stay tuned for our adventures in toilet paper shopping (mostly kidding). But really, we will share our experience in Flagstaff, Homolovi State Park (in Winslow AZ), and Petrified Forest National Park. It was a weird travel week for us, so a lot of new places to share!
Current Adventure Stats:
On the road: 7 1/2 months
Miles towing our home: 4,468
Campgrounds visited: 37
Breweries visited: 31
National/State Parks/Monuments visited: 16