It was the Summer of 2019, together with my colleague, we joined a local two-day-one-night tour to the Grand Canyon and the Antelope Canyon after our annual sales conference in Las Vegas. The tour guide cum driver picked us from the hotel in Las Vegas, then we travelled along Route 66, also known as the Will Rogers Highway, the Main Street of America or the Mother Road. Route 66 was one of the original highways within the US Highway System.
Our first stop was at the Locomotive Park in the city of Kingman. The city of Kingman was established in the early 1880s by Lewis Kingman who located the route of the Santa Fe Railway and established a railroad stop.
The Locomotive Park, one of the National Register of Historic Places, is home to AT&SF steam engine #3759, the last steam engine to travel the line to Kingman. On its last journey, the Santa Fe Railroad presented the engine to Kingman, adding to the 3759 display. The AT&SF is not just for display, but visitors like myself may climb aboard it to experience the ancient steam engine.
Our next stop was the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, the most visited location at the Grand Canyon National Park, with over five million visitors each year. This is my second visit to Grand Canyon. My first visit was in 2006 to the West Rim of Grand Canyon, before the skywalk was built.
Comparing the two Grand Canyon experiences, I personally prefer the experience at the West Rim. I felt closer to nature and felt the awe of the Grand Canyon at the West Rim.
After visiting the Grand Canyon South Rim, we were brought to a Chinese eatery for dinner as the tour was run by Chinese nationals. Following that, we were brought to the hotel where we spent the night.
We departed from the hotel at eight in the morning and drove for two hours to the Horse Shoe Bend. The Horse Shoe Bend is a horseshoe-shaped incised meander of the Colorado River at the East Rim of the Grand Canyon.
From where the tour shuttle stopped us, it was quite a walk to the Horse Shoe Bend and I thought I will not get to see what I saw on the tour website. But I was wrong. After walking for about twenty minutes under the scorching hot sun, I saw the Horse Shoe Bend. It looked so unreal. It was like a picture. I am amazed by the wonderful works of nature, of God. I wish I could just stay there and just take in the amazing and awesome view.
Our final visit is to the mystical Antelope Canyon. The guide brought us to the Upper Antelope Canyon where we spent around an hour. Upon arrival at the entrance, the guide told us to wait at the hut next to the ticket booth area for the local guide. After waiting for less than ten minutes, the local guide led us to the pick-up truck to bring us into the Upper Antelope Canyon.
Just before we were led away by the local guide, our guide reminded us to tip the local guide at the beginning of the tour instead of after the tour is over, as that would encourage the local guide to do a better job of showing us around. Indeed, that did the trick. The local guide was super helpful. He is excellent at capturing the different view of the Upper Antelope Canyon with the light flowing in from the top and through the cracks. Without the local guide, we would never have taken those beautiful photos that are captured below. Can you see the dragon’s eye and the beautiful heart shining with love?
I did not enjoy myself on the first day as I was experiencing motion sickness in the tour shuttle. I could not enjoy myself at the Grand Canyon as I did not feel that great. On the second day, I managed to sit in the front, next to the driver’s seat, I felt a lot better as the airflow was so much better. I enjoyed the second day of the tour. The awesomeness of nature blew me away. I am so glad we extended our stay even though we experienced some initial hiccups as the original tour we booked was cancelled due to credit card issue.
I am glad I went on the tour instead of waiting for the next Las Vegas trip. With the current pandemic situation, I have no idea when will I get to travel overseas again.
Simplify, Explore & Enjoy the journey!
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