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America’s Natural Beauty (#7 Visit the Grand Canyon)

The Grand Canyon. Holy freakin’ cow!  If visiting the Grand Canyon isn’t on your list, do yourself a favor and add it.  It is, without a doubt, the single most beautiful thing I have ever seen (and I’ve seen a lot of gorgeous things).  As you stand on the edge of the canyon, you are able to witness nearly 2 Billion years of the Earth’s geological history that has been exposed by years of erosion caused by the Colorado River.  The canyon is 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide and reaches a depth of over a mile.  Looking out onto the canyon certainly humbles you and makes you realize just how small you are.

We visited the West Rim (good girls don’t go to the South Rim…) which is only 120 miles from Vegas  and home to the famous Grand Canyon Skywalk.  I am thankful that my mum printed out directions to the National Park, because the turn off was identified by just a tiny sign.  Come on people, this the Grand freaking Canyon, put up a billboard!  After miles of twisting and turning dirt roads, we arrived at the  National Park.

We decided to do just a basic canyon tour and bypass the Skywalk.  Why?  Well…according to Frommer’s the Hualapai Tribe’s Grand Canyon Skywalk is the largest rip off in all of Arizona.  After seeing it first hand, I’m inclined to agree.  Allow me to explain.  First, stepping foot onto the Skywalk is going to set you back a minimum of $85 thanks to tribe fees and taxes.  Secondly, in order for you to go out onto the vantage point, you have to forfeit your camera, your cell phone, your water bottle, your first-born child and all of your possessions.  Why?  Because they don’t want you to throw anything over the edge.

I took the photo on the left from just a few feet away from the Skywalk where I was able to dangle my feet over the rim, with my camera in hand.  I was able to pose on the nearby rocks (see the photo above).  Call me a cheap ass, but it just wasn’t worth it.

Fact: Every member of the Hualapai tribe that I spoke with was incredibly soft spoken and mild mannered.  Their calm aurora stood in stark contrast to the visiting loud and obnoxious Americans (myself included) that were visiting their territory.

阿勋

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