It is almost devastating, one's first ever view of the Canyon. People gasp when they pass out from behind the pinons and see the whole vast multicolored hole in the earth. I felt like I might actually cry. We're reduced to "LOOK AT THAT!" "WOAH!" ... almost mindless expressions of awe. The reality of the canyon actually makes the whole Chevy Chase "Okay, then" moment from Vacation especially funny. You should only watch that film after your first visit to the canyon. There's absolutely no way to be dismissive about it. It stops you in your tracks, maybe makes your heart stop momentarily. I grabbed the railing and not from vertigo.
The shuttle buses run by the parks service travel three routes. I took the Hermit's Rest route. All the pictures below with the exception of two or three are from that trail.
One never knows where the ant will take its next bite.
From right to left, languages heard as I passed by: French, Asian, Indian, German, English. Pretty cool.
*A special thanks to Gwynne who talked me into actually making a plan (shudder the thought) to include the canyon in my trip. I am in your debt, Skinny Latte.