Saturday, January 29, 2011

An Unplanned Trip on the Only Road to the Bottom of the Grand Canyon!

When I pulled up to the dealership to return my loaner car, the lady I handed the keys to took one look at my car in disbelief as it was covered with reddish-brown dust, inside and out.  I proceeded to tell her that I owed her a car wash because I took the car to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.  She just chuckled and said “Good one!”  I half suspected that if I told her the truth, she wouldn’t believe a single word…

A few days earlier I had meetings in Kingman but was going to be finished around 1 pm and had the rest of the afternoon off.  So, I set out to travel north on Route 66 with my camera and hiking gear to see what I could find.  After going through the sprawling (not really) towns of Valle Vista, Hackberry, Valentine and Truxton, about an hour later I stopped in the Hualapai Indian Community of Peach Springs because I noticed a road on my map titled ‘route 6/Diamond Creek Road’ that appeared to dead end at the Colorado River.  Huh???  Even though my map showed a route, there really wasn’t any signage that I could see to get me on it.   I pulled into the Hualapai Indian Lodge off Route 66 and inquired.  Turned out to be the place to stop as that road was only accessible with a permit and the lady I talked to was the only one who sold them!  I was a little anxious hearing that I would be the only person to purchase a permit that day.  However, she assured me the road was accessible by sedan and that’s all I needed to hear! 

About 19 miles and an hour later (and driving through several small streams) I was sitting by the side of the Colorado River.  As I peered across the rapids to the Grand Canyon National Park boundary on the other side, the sun began to cast long shadows on the canyon walls. 

Although the river itself still had harsh sunlight, it was the perfect time to begin hunting for photographic treasures back in the canyons.  First up was Diamond Creek.  I’ll let the pictures speak a thousand words for a bit…

As the sun began to set, the sky and canyon walls just came alive.  

I was torn between staying put and knowing that I didn’t want to drive this road in pitch black.  On the way out as the last colors in the sky started to evaporate, I slammed on my brakes…. Before me was an old tree that had seen better days, but was being fed by a small creek that drizzled across the road before me.  The leafless, almost lifeless tree limbs were reaching up into the night sky just searching for the final rays of light.  

What a great conclusion to an unplanned trip to the bottom of the Grand Canyon!  If anyone wants to experience God’s Fullness and Majesty on display, try sitting alone (and I mean ALONE) at the bottom of the Grand Canyon… Having absolutely no idea that I would be here just hours before, I was speechless for a while and thanked Him for this divine appointment.  "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." (Jeremiah 29:11) 

These pictures and more can best be viewed at: - Grand Canyon

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