We visit all kinds of communities, sometimes in nursing homes as well as spiritual and conscious communities. Often, regardless of what kind of community, they are intrigued at our travel and tend to ask where we are headed to next. Originally, we had thought after our work was done in Las Vegas, we would continue onto the south rim Grand Canyon to get some video footage and pictures for our current projects. We knew the North Rim was closed and heard it repeated several times in the community upon our announcement of our upcoming visit. We hadn’t been to the North Rim because often, in our tour, we are not in the area when it is scheduled to be open. As our time came to an end in Las Vegas, NV after some transformational experiences with the Vegas Vortex we began to investigate the weather in the Grand Canyon. Although it was within our limits we didn’t like hearing that there was a planned burn, which means smoke. Sounds like its not a good time to visit the Grand Canyon, even the South Rim. So instead we decide to visit Zion National Park and possibly stay in the area for some much-needed office work. We often work on public lands with our boon-docking office and its great if daytime temperatures are comfortable, dry, and still. We simply open all our doors, set up our solar panel on our windshield, and decide to either sit inside or outside the van. We even have a 10×10 to put up overtop our fold-out table. Often times we choose to sit on our bed with the backdoor open to a gorgeous view!
After a very grateful and fulfilling trip to Zion National Park it was time to dip down into Phoenix, AZ for a few planned programs with Nursing Homes, with LetsDanceActivities.org From where we were, we had two choices of travel, with only a 10minute difference if we decided to drive through the Grand Canyon and Vermillion Cliffs, places we had visited in the past. As Hollis scouted the drive they realized that there was an opportunity to visit or see parts of the North Rim, if it was all clear. Since we deal with National Forests, Parks, and public lands frequently, Hollis has learned a great deal about how different areas handle things.
We stop in a local town for a water refill, gas, and any food staples we might need. After errands, we begin to travel southward towards the Grand Canyon. Stopping at a rest stop at an altitude of 8500 feet for lunch, views, and a little rest break. As we carry on Hollis notices a sign for Jacob Lake and advises Bright Hawk to stop there if we can, as we are not sure if anything is open up here. Hollis looks around and sees very little snow, just a dusting on the side of the road in some areas that see less sunshine than others.
We had planned to just drive through the area and head on down to Phoenix for a much-needed soak in some hot springs. We called ahead in the morning to see if they had a campsite to go along with our visit and were waiting for a return call. Hollis realized there was no signal and hoped to get something at Jacob Lake, even just a connection to their wifi to check voicemail. Jacob Lake is just north of the North Rim of the Grand Canyon off highway 89 in Northern Arizona. We were delighted to discover that our hot spot had good, full signal and we are able to check in about our campsite. We wondered about what to do if his answer was NO, there is no room? Hollis played the voicemail, sounds like this place is super busy and they have no campsites till next week! Now we had to figure out what we were going to do, no matter what we decided we knew we had the rest of our Sunday and our full Monday before we needed to be in Phoenix for an afternoon program.
Hollis decided to step inside the lodge and see what they could find out about the North Rim, there were signs that it was simply 60 miles forward. Hollis asked a very gently spoken man behind the counter, “Hey there friend, Is the North Rim open? or do they have the gate closed.” He smiled and I already knew the answer because he was excited to say YES to me, he answered “Ohhh yeah, there is no snow or anything so they keep the gates open. There are no bathrooms and the stores and lodges are all closed, but you can see the viewpoints and all that!” Hollis smiled, bought the postcards, and Thanked the man for his direction. Hollis was excited to tell Bright Hawk! After sharing the exciting news with Bright Hawk we take off down the road that leads to the North Rim, Grand Canyon. We are very excited that it’s still early in the day, early afternoon and we had several more hours of light. With just a 55 minute scenic drive into the North Rim, Grand Canyon.
As we traveled on we drove through the Kaibab National Forest with beautiful open meadows, sprinkled with trees and bushes and covered with light brown and yellow grasses. A grassy carpet spread out before us almost expecting David Attendboro to narrate our journey forward. We would drive through noticing that every half mile or so, another sign would advise “No Driving in Meadow” and we would remember those old pictures of people visiting Grand Canyon in the early 1900’s in their old Model T style cars, out in the meadow as if their impact was nill. We laughed it off as it seemed obvious to us to simply stay on the road. We pushed on to see what was at the end. We can feel the deep wilderness and the vibration of an American National Park, signs about what not to do, and pull off notifications for slower vehicles, yet there is no one behind us. We are grateful for a quiet drive into the wilderness. As we approach the end and enter the parking lot we are delighted to be one of about ten cars in the parking lot! Everything is certainly closed for the season but the views are still accessible. We park and take off to see the view with eagerness. Hollis’ instinct as a scout sparks them to grab a picture of the map since we didn’t get one on our way in. We decide to start with Bright Angel Point and we walk all the way out, enjoying the view.
As we stare at these beautiful massive rock formations deep in the Grand Canyon we find ourselves grateful for not listening to the nay-sayers and instead just staying in the flow. When we are guided, we are guided to where we need to be, to be guided means surrendering control, as holding onto control drowns your flow. So we enjoy a hike, mostly to ourselves, and head on out on a beautiful nature trail around the rim that ends up being a few mile hike. Neither of us had started our day thinking about hiking the North Rim, we thought we would be landing in Phoenix sometime that evening. Instead, now we walked along the North Rim staring at the glorious beings before us. When you contemplate how long they have been here and all the mysteries these ancient rock beings held within them, you can’t help but find yourself in wonderment. Both of us taking quiet time to wander alone with these massive structures and then walking together in wonderment at this spectacular place.
We enjoy a vegetarian high protein gluten-free dinner in our van in a practically empty parking lot and a direct view of part of the canyon. Enjoying the wildlife that is visiting us and feeling blessed to have this space to ourselves. With fewer people around and everything closed up, the space felt a little like a ghost town and your imagination could easily lead you to see this place when it was first built. Both of us have watched the Ken Burn’s National Parks Documentary that outlines the history of these protected places, we can even sense the vibration through the stone walkways and lookout from the lodge area. Bright Hawk was even inspired to play some music and send some love out to all of you!