The Great West Coast Tour - Day 22 - It's All Grand

The Great West Coast Tour - Day 22 - It's All Grand

Our second day at the Grand Canyon was busy, yet relaxed.

The kids and I found some brunch at the restaurant at the Grand Canyon Visitor Center in Tusayan, which is also right by one of the shuttle stops.

We took this picture in the gift shop at the Visitor’s Center because there had been a conversation with Cousin Megan about the gendering of certain items. My crew was glad to see that people with typical female names could also purchase a personalized knife if they chose.

After we ate, we boarded the Tusayan shuttle to head into the Park, to pick up the shuttles there.

The shuttle system has many options, and it’s confusing until you know what to look for.

Choose your own adventure.

I was glad I had gone the previous day so I had our plan.

Buds spent the day working while the children and I explored, then he and I were going back for the sunset, along with any of the kids who were still in it to win it.

We rode the shuttle all over and got off whenever the mood hit us.

See the people over there?

Monkey took several time lapse videos for us as we rode the shuttle to try and get at the scope of this amazing wonder.

It truly is a place that is impossible to grasp if you haven’t seen it; and nearly impossible to grasp if you have seen it. We laughed because at times it looked so perfect and unbelievable we wouldn’t have been surprised to learn it was just a large screen, suspended from the clouds, with a picture of a vast cavern printed on it.

We meandered in the park for hours. Just riding the shuttles to the farthest point in the park takes over 1 1/2 hours.

I did have a splendid chance to visit with a woman and her husband who both work for the German version of the State Department. They had just begun their tour in D.C. a few months prior and were getting in some visits around the U.S. before school began for their children. After some gentle probing on both sides to see where we each were on the political spectrum, we settled in for some good head shaking together about the insanity of the Trump Regime. As nice as it is to have my beliefs supported and reinforced, it sickens and saddens me how much the world has been shocked and disgusted by the behavior of the United States.

Since we had been to Germany so recently it was also fun to talk with them about their country. They live outside of Berlin, which was one of our favorite places on our adventure there.

We waved good bye to them as we headed to the gift shop.

There was a food truck strategically placed right by the shuttle stop at the gift shop, and we were glad to enjoy burritos and ice cream sandwiches.

After we were through touring the park, we spent a lovely time in the Grand Canyon Gift Shop. It was the most beautiful, interesting gift shop I’ve been in. Gorgeous, interesting books, stunning posters, post cards, scores of t-shirts, puzzles, mugs, stickers; they had it all.

It’s the hundredth anniversary of the designation of the Grand Canyon as a National Park. (Snow Canyon is still waiting.) We love the style of the logo for the celebration.

We found a puzzle we thought Buddie’s parents would enjoy, and they recently sent us a picture of it completed.

After our shopping splurge, we headed back to the hotel to see what Buds was up to.

When Buds and I headed back into the park in the late afternoon(The children were done for the day.), I had a grand plan for how we could park at the perfect location for sunset viewing.

We were stymied by the gate that made it so only shuttle buses could go into the far reaches of the park where we were headed. Very kindly, a person pulled out of a parking spot right by the shuttle bus we needed to be on. So we parked the van and ran for the shuttle.

The sunset was beautiful, the canyon was clear, and the people watching was fantastic.

Storm clouds added drama and majesty as well.

We got off at the shuttle stop before our planned location for watching the sun set, which gave us a chance to hike along the rim. I would definitely come back to the Grand Canyon for some dedicated hiking.

We got back to the hotel well after dark, so glad to have had this time together.

Next up, we head into the last legs of the Great West Coast Tour…