Today was a magical day beginning in the mountains of Flagstaff, Arizona. We met our guides for the day, Steve and Sheldon, who started our journey to the Grand Canyon! Our hour long drive to the canyon was full of the beautiful scenery of Flagstaff and punctuated by the stories of our bus drivers. Upon arriving to the canyon, we did a “blind reveal” in which we all turned our backs to the view and turned around at once, as our reaction was being filmed. Needless to say we were screeching with joy at the sight of the mile-deep canyon!
We stopped at various lookout points, in awe of each new spot. We ate lunch with a view of the canyon and stopped at two additional points, and ended our time at the Grand Canyon with coffee and ice cream at Desert View. On the way home, we stopped at Cameron Trading Post, a huge gift shop on the Navajo Reservation which once functioned as a Navajo trading post. After some shopping and Indian Fry Bread, we headed home. The ride back to our hotel was made colorful by important conversations with our guide about natural disasters, sustainability, land use, and the reality of the reservations, which we passed through for much of the time. Outside the Arizona sun was setting behind the snowy mountains of Flagstaff. We arrived back at the hotel and ate tacos to finish off the night and ended with our daily nightly meeting, which consisted of reflection on environmental, social, and economic connections we’ve made with our surroundings thus far. All hearts are full after a day on the canyon!
Love from Flagstaff,
Kate (and the Southwest Group)