November Backpacking in the Grand Canyon

Snow, rain, sunshine, fog – you name it – we experienced it all in a matter of 3 days on this memorable Grand Canyon adventure.  The Grand Canyon is not only rugged and vast in terrain, but its constantly changing weather kept our minds present and forced us to be flexible to whatever came our way.

Day 1

Our trip began by driving from Flagstaff through a snowstorm to the parking lot at the South Rim.  We quickly divvied up the food and headed into the canyon with the hopes that the weather at the bottom would be warmer.  I struggled to find a balance between walking and taking photos – the light in the canyon kept shifting and the snow on the sandstone was beautiful.  

We made it to our campsite before sunset and whipped up some veggie burritos for dinner.  With full bellies and tired bodies, we headed to bed early.

Day 2

We woke early and had a delicious veggie and egg scramble for breakfast.  We loosened up our sore muscles with some light yoga, and then hit the trail towards our second campsite, Indian Garden Campground.  The sun quickly warmed us as we walked beside the Colorado River.  Before we began ascending away from the river, our rad guide Jacqueline led us in a meditation and invited us to dunk our head in the cleansing water.  It was icy and refreshing.  

We made it to camp in time for a sunset hike to Plateau point.  The trail was lined with purple cacti and the sky offered various hues of pink.  We settled into a peaceful silence that seemed appropriate for the dramatic scene before our eyes.  Afterwards, we played a few rounds of Hacky Sack and headed back to camp for our final dinner. 

Day 3

It rained most of the evening, but luckily it subsided by morning.  We made record time in packing up, and started our climb out of the canyon.  Along the way, I gave a little photo lesson on how to identify light for various photo compositions!

Sunshine greeted us at the top, and before we parted we took a moment to share what the Canyon taught us.  For me, it reminded me that most things in life are temporary- pain, joy, fear, hurt, love.  We experienced 4 seasons worth of weather in 3 days, and just when I thought it would stay rainy or cold or cloudy, the weather shifted and brought something new.  So it goes with our many seasons in life.  

Cheers to a wonderful adventure to end the year!  Happy Holidays, friends.

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