Arriving at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon

After about a 6-hour drive from Phoenix, we finally arrived at Grand Canyon Lodge at the North Rim.  As mentioned in my last post, it’s definitely worth the extra drive to go to the North Rim instead of the South.  But remember that it’s only open from around mid-May to mid-October due to the potential for snow.

When we checked in we realized that we had reserved a motel room.  I had completely forgotten, since we made the reservation almost a year in advance and I didn’t look closely at my confirmation sheet.  You see, because the North Rim is only open 5 months of the year it’s more difficult to get reservations, so it’s best to try to book a year ahead if you can.   We waited just a few weeks too long and missed out on getting a cabin. However, if you’re flexible, sometimes there are last minute cancellations that open up on short notice.

So, last year we stayed in one of the quaint Frontier cabins that has a little fireplace (pictured left), as well as a private front porch with rustic rocking chairs (below).  We were mere steps from the edge of the canyon and closer to the Lodge amenities.

This year, because we booked late, we stayed in the motel.  It really wasn’t bad and a less expensive option if you’re trying to save money.  But it just didn’t have quite the character that the cabins have.  The bathroom was too small for a large person to fit comfortably in.  (Fortunately, neither of us are too large.)  The bed was a bit too firm for our taste and there was an empty space in the corner of the room that would have been just perfect for a reading chair.  It was nice that they provided a little bench for two outside the motel room door on the balcony and everything was clean and well maintained.  The motel buildings are the farthest accommodations from the main lodge, but we were up there to enjoy the outdoors, so we didn’t mind the easy walk.

Next time we go though, we’ll try to get a cabin again.  There’s just something a bit nostalgic about them.

Not sure if I mentioned before, but we were meeting two other couples at the Rim.  They were both planning to camp in their RVs at the campground  just a mile or so away.  We hadn’t set a specific time to meet since we weren’t sure exactly when we’d all get up

there.  Timing was perfect though.  As we were standing at the check-in desk, Cathy walked up and greeted us.  She and her husband and the other couple just happened to be out on the gorgeous deck having a drink and enjoying the view!

So, after we got checked in, and dumped our stuff in our room, we came back and joined them just in time for the Condor Talk by the park ranger. Did you know that you may see rare California Condors at the Grand Canyon?  And did you know that their wingspan can be over 9 feet?  Now, if you check out the photo on the link above, you’ll see that they are NOT a pretty bird close up, but can you even imagine seeing a 9 foot span flying overhead? I haven’t had the privilege of seeing one yet, but I would love to.    We did get to see some Turkey Vultures, but I’ll talk about that later.  They’re some big birds as well.

After a bit of relaxation, we headed back to the campground and shared a great meal with our friends.  Then enjoyed a precious visit around the campfire.  I don’t think we could have had a more perfect ending to our day.  Thank you Lord, for so many blessings.

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