Sunday, Aug. 25, 2002 || Vacation Chronicles V: Grand Canyon Complete!

Nicole feels The current mood of nacwolin at

Day Three Continued
Ending an Incredible Day

Along the West Rim Drive

So, where was I?

Ah yes, the shuttle to the West Rim drive. Nothing can ever be easy, right? We have a joke that if we get into a line, it will immediately become the longest wait. You know, sort of Murphy’s Law à la Our Family.

We boarded a shuttle near Mather Point. We were assured it would take us to the stop for the West Rim drive shuttle. During peak season, you can only see those points by taking the free shuttle that the wonderful park service provides.

We zipped through the park, stopping every few minutes, the shuttle filling quickly, especially after boarding at the Marketplace stop. We were a mere 2 stops from the transfer point when we heard a popping noise. We were sitting in the back and the ride suddenly became quite bumpy.

“You will all have to get off here. You will all have to get off at this stop. An airbag broke. Please get off at this stop and wait for the next shuttle in 15 minutes.”

Great. At least we had trail mix to munch on as we waited. We started up a conversation with a family from northern California and tried to keep our minds off the wait and the heat.

The first shuttle pulled up. A full, shuttle-worth of folks were waiting, us included. No one got off of the shuttle, and it was already full.

Okay. No big deal. What’s 15 more minutes when you are sitting on a curb with three hot, tired kids, two of which are taking turns reciting episodes of Sponge Bob in their entirety?

Fifteen more minutes and another shuttle bus stopped despite the very obvious fact that it was also at total capacity. Hello!? And you stopped because...?

Okay, so who were we kidding? We weren’t getting on a shuttle at this stop. So we decided to hike on back to the Marketplace, where we were finally able to board a shuttle.

And then we tried to ignore the fact that as we came upon the stop we had just left, giddy with our cleverness, a bit smug to be on the bus and not waiting, again, with those other clueless folk, we were chagrined to see that the original bus was gone, and so were all those hapless tourists!

See what I mean? “The bus wouldn’t have broken down if we hadn’t been on it,” Rob laughed.

Once on the actual West Rim shuttle, we decided to ride all the way in to Hermit’s Rest, get a snack and cold drink, and catch the shuttle back, stopping at only two points, Mohave and Hopi.

Near Hermit’s Rest
This is my favorite picture of all of us.

We feasted on ice cream, bottled water, and Power Aid, enjoying a much needed breather before we traveled back to the Marketplace.

First View of the Colorado River

Another Perspective

I can’t remember if those were taken from Hermit’s Rest or Mohave Point. What I do know is that it was hard for me to comprehend, as I gazed down the canyon at that little ribbon of water, that you can actually hike down there. Incredible.

Upon returning to the Marketplace, we downed much needed fluids, bought some souvenirs, and mailed off postcards.

Moosin’ Around

We decided to drive as far down the East Rim as we could, with plans to view the sunset from Lipan Point. We stopped at the second point along the route, Grandview. With the sun beginning its descent, this point definitely lived up to its name.

The wind had really kicked up and was quite gusty. I almost lost my ball cap to the canyon. Parker yelped, “Dirty eyes! Dirty eyes!” as sand and dust blew about.

We jumped back into the van and hurried down to Lipan Point. You HAVE to stop at the point that your guidebook says is “the most dramatic rim view”.

Wouldn't you agree?

~ ~ ~

test - Saturday, Oct. 01, 2016
Just a reminder - Friday, Aug. 10, 2007
Rockin' Girl Blogger - Wednesday, Jul. 18, 2007
A good end - Friday, Jun. 01, 2007
Moving on? Yes and no. - Monday, May. 07, 2007

All entries (c) Nacwolin 2001-2006. These are my words. Use your own, m'kay?