10 August 2010

Across the Kaibab Plateau

Navaho Bridge
While my daughter is here, we are taking advantage of my days off to see some of the southwest. Our first stop on this journey was at Navaho Bridge across the red Colorado River. Our timing was perfect as we were also able to watch two California Condors soaring the air currents at the canyon's edge!

Lee's Ferry
Lee's Ferry is the main site for launching river rafts on the Colorado River. It was pretty quiet while we were there so we just enjoyed the views of the quiet river and the myriad colors of the landscape!

Paria River confluence
A little further down the river, where the Paria River joins the Colorado, the influx of red sediment made quite a contrast with the deep blue greens of the water. Navaho Bridge is actually downriver from this site, so the red color we saw there was created almost entirely from Paria River sediment.

Frog w red spots
One of the little delights we saw were hundreds of these tiny red spotted frogs as well as little brown toads. Most of them were no more than an inch long, some only 3/8" long! I've never seen so many little frogs and toads in one area. Everywhere we looked they were hopping around, moving from clump to clump of grass, hiding under rocks and generally trying to get away from us. They were hard to photograph as they moved so quickly!

Rock Lifting
At the little settlement of Cliff Dwelling, enormous boulders perch on columns of rock. Jessie and I had fun taking pictures of her "lifting" the rocks!

Vermillion Cliffs
The Vermillion Cliffs border the north side of House Rock Valley from Lee's Ferry to the Kaibab Plateau. As so often happens in northern Arizona, the monsoon rains of late July and August have turned the landscape green. It's an expansive view that as my daughter says, "Makes one feel insignificant."

Forest after 2006 fire
As we drove down the highway toward the north rim of the Grand Canyon, we were stunned at the extent of devastation from the fires in 2006. For 7 miles, the forest is nothing but barren spires of fire scarred trees. There is hope though. The shrubby growth in the foreground is composed primarily of small aspens, shoots from the underground root system that survived the fires. In a few years, there will be massive aspen groves along this road! It's a good reminder that forests, like the rest of us, are always in progress, that things continuously change and that even devastation of this magnitude can be overcome.

Forest without fire
Before the fire, the woods looked like this. Lush pines of several varieties and mature aspen trees. So lovely! I find it reassuring that in time, even the fire ravaged areas will look like this once again.

DSC05895
The view from the North Rim of the Grand Canyon is spectacular. I must say that I think it is more beautiful than from the south side. On the horizon, you can see the San Francisco Peaks near Flagstaff well over 70 miles away.

DSC05898
We spent a little bit of time sitting on the patio at the Grand Canyon Lodge enjoying the view. What a lovely spot! I'd love to be able to spend a few days here just sitting and absorbing the view.

IMG_2156
A short walk along the rim to Bright Angel Point revealed beauties such as these interesting blossoms. I am fascinated by the feathers they produce!

Wildflower Meadow
On the drive back, we took time to enjoy the broad meadows and wildflowers.

Aspen
This aspen grove acts as a nursery for young fir and spruce trees. How I would have loved to sit there for hours, listening to the birds and enjoying the dappled light. Such a serene place.

Sunset 8Aug10
Eventually we made our way off the Kaibab plateau and headed down the road to Kanab, Utah. The setting sun behind the clouds was magnificent. A perfect way to end a lovely day!

12 comments:

Lace-lovin' Librarian - Diane said...

I've been enjoying your travel pictures and commentary. You're bringing back wonderful memories of the trip Dave and I took 5 years ago for our 25th anniversary! I agree... I think the North Rim is more spectacular than the South rim... and it's a lot cooler!

Vintage Sandy said...

I so enjoy traveling along with you on your journey's your photo's are just spectacular....I always look forward to your next one so I can go along!
Thanks!

Magpie's Mumblings said...

You make me feel as thought I'm right there with you! Thank you so much for the lovely photos and descriptions of an area I doubt I will ever get to see in person.

a bit of info... said...

I initially found your blog because I was heavily into crazy quilting. My hands no longer want to do that fine work, unfortunately, so now I mostly knit and crochet, but I haven't given up your blog. Today's photos are spectacular - every bit as good as those in a travel magazine. I'm angling our finances toward a new camera for me and wondered what you're using.

Laurie said...

Another fantastic travel log! Your pictures are awesome, someday I'll make my way south west to see all this beauty in person. For now, your photos will do the trick. Beautiful!!

shirley bligh said...

Your photos of your trip are great this is some of the most spectacular scenery you must be thoroughly enjoying if.

FredaB said...

The picture of the North rim is just breathtaking. You are a great photographer and your son and daughter are both outdoorsman like you are which is so nice.

Have a great visit.

Hugs

fredaB

Val said...

I'm loving travelling with you Lisa - your photography is wonderful.

Anonymous said...

I see a project evolving from the flowers you show at Bright Angel Point:) All so interesting and beautiful. Mary

Plays with Needles said...

I absolutely adore taking trips with you! The pics are magnificent...the grand canyon was spectacular...as were the aspens...the burned out trees...the whole trip!!

Tatkis said...

Fantastic and beautiful pictures! Thank you very much for sharing!

Best wishes,
Tatyana

Anonymous said...

i went to california a month ago & i visited the same places ; i love it; it was marvelous
thant you for the photos
cachounette
http://www.cachounette.com/

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails