Last Thursday we headed down to Arizona. We like to go to Arizona in the Spring to catch some Spring Training baseball games (see past trips here, here, and here). We usually leave in the afternoon and drive straight through, which makes for a really long day (11-12 hour drive). Everytime we go, we think, "hey, we should stop by the grand canyon," but we never do. So this time, we planned ahead, and booked a hotel. We drove the 8 hours to the Grand Canyon on Thursday night, got there at about 11pm, and stayed the night at the Maswik Lodge. This hotel was well worth the price considering it was a 5 minute walk from the most amazing views you've ever laid eyes on.
When we got there, we pretty much went straight to bed, because we wanted to wake up the next morning in time to watch the sunrise at 6:31. The next morning, we woke up and walked the 5 minutes to the rim, and waited for the bus to take us to Hopi Point, which I had heard would be a great place to watch the sunrise, because it juts out more than the other lookout points, enabling you to see very far east and west.
Before our trip I googled a bunch of stuff about how to take good Grand Canyon pictures, sunrise Grand Canyon pictures, good lookout points, etc... Lots of blogs I read said things about using ND filters, special lenses, going to great spots where there wont be other people, good times of day, how to watch the clouds, blah, blah, blah.
Now that I've been there, let me tell you the REAL tricks:
Step 1. Drive to the Grand Canyon.
Step 2. Get out of your car.
Step 3. Take picture.
Ta-Da! Seriously, this place was completely breathtaking. Just bring a camera, and take a picture. It's almost guaranteed to be one of the most amazing pictures you've ever taken in your life. It is that beautiful.
^^I love watching sunrises. And this one was pretty amazing. Also very freezing, but amazing none the less.^^
^^We brought breakfast and ate it at the lookout point. It was great. Oh, and Jordan's brother, Landan, came too! We loved having him with us. ^^
^^The moment the sun rose, everything turned from blues/purples/grays, to reds/pinks/oranges. It was amazing. Also, if you look closely, you can see the Colorado River.^^
^^Reagan was a little trooper. She did great waking up early. I think she was the only one who was actually warm though, so that probably helped a lot. She got to eat her breakfast at the lookout point too!^^
^^When the sun was actually in the sky, the clouds started to do this awesome wispy thing.^^
After we finished our breakfast, we decided to walk back to the hotel instead of riding the bus, so we could check out the views at the 3 lookouts along the way back. Each one was amazing. I'm pretty sure, the sunrise would have been great at any of them, not just Hopi.
^^Gah! Seriously. Go to the Grand Canyon. If this picture doesn't convince you, I'm not sure what will.^^
^^Can you see that crazy trail?! Holy cow! The people hiking way down there looked like tiny ants. We kept saying things like, "What would it be like to hike down the Grand Canyon?!" or "Man, that must be crazy!" And then we remembered we had already done it. Haha! And it was crazy. ^^
After we got back to the hotel, we packed up, headed over to the Visitor's Center for a few minutes, and then hit the road!