Well Of Course It’s Grand. Why Else Would They Call It That?

During our first summer in Arizona we went to the Grand Canyon.  We were campers then.  Granted we had a tent trailer, but c’mon we still had to walk to the nearest bathroom to use the facilities so I consider it camping.  I guess technically we didn’t have to walk to the bathroom.  It did have a portable toiletish bowl thingy that we could have used but, well, ew.

Moving right along though.

Of course I’d heard about the grandness of the Grand Canyon.  I mean, it’s pretty tough to miss that first word of its title right?  But I always assumed it was an overstatement.  A meaningless word tacked on to it by some zealous granola head who probably would appreciate a geyser more than he would an amazingly designed outlet mall.  Whatever.  I figured that since we’re close and all we might as well take the kids up there and spend a long weekend camping.  It was another place they could cross off of their lists.

So after a grueling trip (think blown tire with a backseat full of exhausted, whining children) that took about three hours more than we planned for, we made it.  It was pitch black when we arrived.  Luckily Jeff is pretty adept at putting things together (it’s an engineer thing apparently) and he was able to quickly and efficiently erect a little home on wheels where only a box on wheels existed before.  Once tucked into our cozy little beds we all drifted off and caught some much needed z’s.

By the light of morning we were able to appreciate things much more.

We drove to the rim of the canyon where I expected to see a big ‘ol hole in the ground before promptly heading back to the campsite for a game of Frisbee.  Well, to my surprise the scene that stretched out before me was far more than a hole in the ground.  I can honestly say that what I saw there took my breath away.  It left the girls in awe too; they just stared on in utter silence and that, I can assure you, doesn’t happen everyday.

I have pictures.  Unfortunately, when it comes to relaying an accurate view of what we saw, these fail miserably.

We camped for four nights and I daresay that it was one of the most amazing trips we’ve taken.  We spent hours playing a game we called rock tag.  We learned a lot about fossils and California condors at the many ranger programs we took time to visit.  The girls even earned their first Junior Ranger badges.  Hiking along the canyon rim was time well spent.  Kennedy even earned the nickname Hiker Ken because in spite of all that complaining (and boy was there a lot of it) she didn’t collapse in defeat.  Cassidy, on the other hand, earned the nickname dead weight for reasons portrayed in the photos below.  When the afternoon thunderstorms would roll in we’d retreat to the safety of our trailer for UNO card games that seemed to last FOR. EVER.  Exploration of nature stuff filled the remainder of the day while smores and campfire stories filled the evenings.  After four TV and video gameless days had passed and we packed up and drove away, homebound, Torri told me that she had more fun at Grand Canyon that at Disney World.  Uh-huh.  You read that right.  Once I recovered from the coronary spasm, I admitted that it most certainly was an amazing trip.

* Yes, Cassidy is both picking her nose and wearing a sweatshirt that reads “It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere.”  We’re camping, not modeling.  Deal.

16 Replies to “Well Of Course It’s Grand. Why Else Would They Call It That?”

  1. We took our kiddos there last October on fall break. I had lived in this state my entire life, and had never been there.

    I was so excited and was thrilled with how beautiful it was.

    And I was really happy, because it was just how I remembered from my days watching The Brady Bunch.

    I was a total fan. I’m not ashamed.

    The pictures of your trip are amazing, especially the family picture! That Cass is picking her nose and wearing the hilarious shirt makes it even better!

  2. We went to the Grand Canyon with my hubby’s parents…I think one day, I would like to take that trip again and really make it meaningful to us…not his parents!

  3. The nose picking picture totally cracked me up!!! We have a few pictures like that around here…

    What were the ages of the girls when you took them? My oldest is 5, so we probably would have to wait a few years, but I’d love to take them someday.

  4. I cannot wait to take my girls there!

    And my heart is honest-to-goodness thumping in my chest after seeing that family picture. PLEASE tell me you aren’t teetering on the canyon edge as you appear to be!

  5. I’ve wanted to go for ages. My mother offered to take me the summer of 1994, same time my wedding was planned. I turned down the offer and got married instead. I made a good choice but I still really want to see the Grand Canyon.

  6. I have only been there once, about 7 years ago, but I remember experiencing the same awestruck moment that you described. It’s truly incredible, and no picture I have ever seen has done it justice. Love the family picture of you all; it’s cool how the entire background is the canyon…it’s so huge there isn’t even a slice of sky showing.

    Good tip about the smoothies….you made me crave one, so that’s going to be my breakfast tomorrow. Thanks!

  7. Now I remember this post!

    Your kids look so LITTLE! It’s crazy how quickly time passes us by.

    Have you gone back to the Grand Canyon every Memorial Day since?

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