Grand Day at the Grand Canyon

You know you’ve got to get out of Vegas for the day when you catch yourself humming “My Heart Will Go On.” It’s the first symptom of VOS, otherwise known as Vegas Overstimulation Syndrome.

When the incessant thumping of Rihanna and Katy Perry songs throughout the hotel–everywhere, even in the bathrooms, even at the pool–is driving you mad, and you can’t face the thought of seeing One.More.Rhinestone. a day trip to the Grand Canyon is a perfect antidote.

There are dozens of companies and hundreds of ways to get to the canyon, from buses to helicopters to plane rides. The concierge at the hotel suggested Pink Jeep Tours as an alternative to the more crowded bus trips and the more expensive helicopter and plane trips.  Pink Jeep provides very comfortable SUV-type transportation, for small groups of up to ten passengers, at a reasonable price.IMG_1846

I chose a tour that left at 6:30 a.m. and returned about 4:30 p.m., as that best suited my jet-lag-intensified morning person schedule.

We started out with a brief photo-op at the Hoover Dam.

Hoover Dam and intake towers.
The intake towers of Hoover Dam.

Then we carried on for about another hour until we reached the West Rim of the Grand Canyon.

I had purchased a ticket in advance from the hotel concierge for the Skywalk, and that was the first thing I did once I got there. For those who are considering it, I would skip it. Yes, the view is impressive, and it is really cool to be able to walk on a glass floor and look directly below you to the bottom of the canyon. But the concierge didn’t tell me that you can’t take photos on the Skywalk, so I’m telling you so that you will not be disappointed.

Instead, they have professional photographers who will take a series of photos of you in different poses along the walk (lying prone on the glass floor; looking wistfully into the middle distance over the canyon, etc.) You can buy individual photos for $16 or buy a package for a further cost.

The problem I had with the experience is that the focus is not on the beauty and majesty of the place you are standing. The focus is on letting the professional photographers have the full run of the Skywalk in order to sell as many photos as possible. I had to step around people who were having their ‘lying down’ poses done, and I was stopped briefly from getting to the other side by a photographer who was in the midst of a shot.

The cost to purchase a ticket for the Skywalk is $35 additional to the entrance fee for the canyon. I think they’d be better off raising the ticket price and letting visitors take their own photos.  I found the professional photographers to be an intrusion into my experience and, well, the expression ‘they acted like they owned the place’ is not amiss here. That being said, the rest of the Canyon tour lived up to expectations. Here are some pictures from the first stop, Eagle Point.

The view is made even more spectacular by the lack of railings or other obstructions. But it does give you the colliwobbles a bit, knowing how easy it would be to fall.


This is the eagle, of Eagle Point. The rock formation looks like an eagle flying.



We stopped for lunch at Guano Point, where members of the Hualapai tribe served a barbeque lunch of chicken, corn and salad.  As nice as it was to sit down for awhile, there was a hill to be climbed, though, because it was there, and because I could, so I did.

I can do it!
Getting closer!
almost there!
Made it!
View looking back towards the restaurant, from Guano Point.
No kidding?

I am happy to report that I did not hear one Celine Dion, Rihanna or Katy Perry song for the entire day. And the Canyon appears to be a Rhinestone Free Zone.  It is easy to forget the outside world when you are in Las Vegas. But my day at the Grand Canyon was all fresh air, sunshine and exercise and some of the most beautiful scenery in the world. If you suffer from VOS, get outside and enjoy nature, and you will be cured.

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. Lois says:

    so far I have only gaped at the Grand Canyon from a comfy seat 30,000 feet up. Now I can’t wait to go and see it up close and personal. Thanks for the post!

    1. You’re welcome, Lois! It was a great day, and the tour guide made it a lot of fun!

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