Monday, 12 January 2015

On the Grand Canyon l America 2014; Part 5

This is it guys. We are well on the way now. I am rocking and rolling with this wave for as long as it may continue. There is no way that I am letting a year go past before I manage to actually blog about the places I went to on the road trip, it's bad enough that it's been 10 months...

So, another re-cap for you guys:

Day One - drive from Phoenix to Monument Valley and a night spent at the View Hotel
Day Two - drive from Monument Valley - Four Corners - Page, Arizona and a night spent at the cheapest Best Western ever
Day Three - a visit to Antelope Canyon and then a mega drive to...

You get precisely zero points for guessing correctly.

The grandest of all the canyons, the Grand Canyon.

We actually arrived in the late afternoon of Day Three of the road trip and were in time to see the Canyon in some really great light. However I was so busy enjoying it that I didn't take any photos of it so you will have to deal with some incredibly washed out photos that I took on our stroll around very early the next morning.

We stayed at Yavapai Lodge which is inside the Reservation perimeter. There are a whole host of places you can stay near the Grand Canyon and there are loads either within walking distance or a short drive away. Think Center Parcs but on a slightly, you know, grander scale. There are eateries close by and there is also a supermarket in the Grand Canyon Village so if you want to go self-catering, or are one of the people who decide to camp there, you can get supplies.

The next morning dawned much earlier than it should have done for me as I continued my reign of getting time confused when in America. It's not as stupid as you might think and I will attempt to explain.

So much as we have GMT and BST time changes to deal with, parts of America do too and they change over to Daylight Savings Time (DST). However, Arizona, doesn't change their clocks ever (why would they? The blinking sun is always shining for them. Bastards.) Still very simple. Except for the fact that some of the Reservations, despite being in Arizona, do observe DST. So you can still be in Arizona, but on a Reservation and there's an hour's time difference.

It gets better...

So because of where we travelled we were very close to the border with Utah which does observe DST - so when we arrived at The View Hotel at Monument Valley which is technically in Arizona we mysteriously lost an hour. Only to gain it back by the time we arrived in Page, Arizona.

Meanwhile, I'd been an idiot and not changed all my watch or various electronic devices to the correct time when I arrived which just meant complete chaos. I didn't know what way was up or down or what the hell time it was and when I jumped out of bed bright and breezy on Day Four of the Road Trip ready to tackle the Grand Canyon - it was actually 7am and not 8am...

You want to know the bonus of getting up ridiculously early though? You will be one of the first people on the shuttle buses which drive around various routes at the Canyon - it's a hop on and hop off service and you can walk between stops if the fancy so takes you.

Actually you won't just be one of the first people, you'll kind of be the only people, but that just makes it more atmospheric doesn't it? Right?

You may have noticed that I've blathered about where I stayed, and really talked about how time confuses me a lot but I haven't really mentioned much about the Canyon have I?

You see the thing is, there isn't really a great deal to say about it.

I know. I'm about to be hugely controversial here.

Don't get me wrong it is more than grand and photos and people describing it will never do it justice. It really has to be seen with your own eyes to really appreciate it. And the first time you see it you really do go. "Fuck me, that's massive."


But for me, that's kinda it. Once you've seen it once, you've seen it. And you can walk along it for a few hours and stop at various points and look out but it will still be very very big and very very grand and very very canyony.

This was actually the second time I have visited the Canyon, I went back in 2008 on my first trip to Arizona and I honestly wouldn't have gone again if it hadn't been for the fact that The Fucktard (I'm trying out some new names, I'll let you know what I settle on) hadn't seen it before and was adamant that he wanted to see it. And when I did see it again for the first time I went, "Oh yeah, it really is big", but then was pretty much of the opinion that I was ready to go.

I did warn you it was a little controversial.

I feel like it's something you tick off a list and say it's done. 

Don't get me wrong though, it really is bloody Grand. They definitely thought about that name a lot.

By the time we returned to the Grand Canyon Village at about 10.30am the bus stops were absolutely heaving with people, and I mean heaving. So if you are going to go I would maybe consider an early jaunt so you can get the chance to really take in the views and take some photographs without people crawling all over you.

After The Grand Canyon it was time to head the 230 miles back to Phoenix in time to see my American Girl get married and my Road Trip was officially over, leaving me absolutely gagging to do it all again.

(Nope. I haven't yet finished my posts about America 2014 - just one more and then I swear I'm done. Possibly.)


  1. I don't know why I'd never realised that people could stay there. I guess I didn't really even plan to go that much so had done very little research and just decided to keep on driving. I know what you mean and I totally agree. I was kinda like "yeah, I've seen it, taken some photos, home for a coffee?". The time thing confused me and my sat nav a lot between Arizona and Nevada.

  2. I've never visited before. I'd like to, but don't think I would go out of my way to. It certainly isn't on my bucket list! I enjoyed looking at your photos though! ;0)
    'Fucktard' is own personal favourite is 'knob jockey'. Please feel free to borrow if required!

  3. Fucktard is good, I'll see if I can come up with anymore. I felt like this about New Zealand. It's likes Wales and Scotland but with horrible tropical rain and you can't get Robinsons squash there. It was lovely, I had a great time there and saw some nice things but I wouldn't want to go back. People think I'm mad when I say NZ bored me a little but I was there for 3 months and it's all so big and nice I just got used to it.

  4. Fucktard is my favourite word. Good work!
    So it's always sunny, but maybe there's mist but fuck all rain right? At least when you go to the Lakes it looks different every time...
    But I did watch a program with Dan Snow who did some kayaking in the canyon... Now that I could get on board with.

  5. Bellend is my current word of choice but Fucktard is good.
    I have to say I would probably be the same as you - seen it, right let's not hang about... tick.


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