There are few sites around the world that are as majestic as the Grand Canyon. It is so awe-inspiring that it will leave you wanting more.
I remember visiting this natural cathedral a few years ago, but nothing could have prepared me for the absolutely stunning views. The sights and scenery from Guano Point on the West Rim were amazing! I have yet to get over the scope of how incredible the Grand Canyon truly is.
They say that life is all about experiences. The Grand Canyon just so happens to be one such unforgettable experience.
Now is the perfect time to visit this one-of-a-kind destination, as Grand Canyon West (GCRC) celebrates its 25th anniversary with record-breaking visitation, which will be commemorated on April 20. This year also marks the 40th season for the River Runners whitewater rafting trips. What could be better than exploring this majestic natural wonder without the summer crowds or the summer heat?
Thousands of adventurous visitors come from around the world every year to tour the countless acres of sacred land. People from all walks of life are invited to dive deep into the rich culture and history of the Hualapai tribe.
“Twenty-five years is a testament to the firm foundation and strong history we have of providing an unmatched experience to visitors from across the country and around the world,” said Jennifer Turner, the CEO of GCRC.
To fully experience the deepest canyon in the world, you may want to explore the white water rapids of the Colorado River. This one-day trip with the Hualapai River Runners traverses through a 35-mile section of the canyon, where you can witness four different geological eras of Earth.
If you can walk and have a sense of wonder, you will enjoy this ride, which starts and ends in the town of Peach Springs, Arizona. It has a few fun, exciting rapids in the first 10 miles, which get your heart racing and your clothes soaked, then the rest of the trip is smooth water.
You’ll have the opportunity to hike up to natural waterfalls, such as Travertine Falls, hear about the history of the Hualapai people, and observe indigenous wildlife while enjoying a relaxing box lunch along the riverbank.
And don’t worry, it does not take any athletic ability or skill to take part in this experience of a lifetime. Honestly, the hardest part of this trip is getting in and out of the 22-foot long catamaran style raft.
You may conclude the rafting trip with a short, scenic helicopter ride to the top of Grand Canyon West, where you can test your fear of heights on the Skywalk. In 2007, the Hualapai build the Skywalk to futher increase tourism to the area. The unique panoramic views of a canyon 10 million years in the making from this horseshoe-shaped bridge is nothing short of astonishing.
Just walking along the 70-foot, five-inch thick glass is a thrill in itself!
Suspended 4,000 feet above the riverbed, the Skywalk enables visitors to walk beyond the canyon’s edge and take in unparalleled, endless views of unbounded beauty, while receiving the ultimate adrenaline rush. Although you may be eager to get out on the glass and snap hundreds of photos, no personal cell phones or cameras are allowed. You also must wear special scrub-style booties over your shoes to prevent scratches on the surface of the Skywalk.
After viewing the Skywalk and while waiting for the bus to take you to another point, take the time to capture some more memories and be sure to check out the small jewelry bazaar the Hualapai set up on the side of the road.
Grand Canyon Resorts West offers a variety of packages to suit all needs, including restful stays at the Hualapai Ranch or the warm, inviting atmosphere of the Lodge on Historic Route 66. At the Ranch, you can enjoy western hospitality, wagon rides, horseback riding and cowboy entertainment.
The Lodge is the ideal stop for travelers venturing between Arizona and Las Vegas. They are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and encourage guests to begin and end their days by taking part in revealing their personal adventures in the main lobby, beside a specially crafted river-rock fireplace. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, the Lodge also features a delicious, authentic Native American restaurant, Diamond Creek.
You definitely will not be disappointed if you choose to embark upon this adventure of a lifetime. And spring isn’t the only time to visit one of the seven greatest natural wonders of the world, either. The Grand Canyon is a worthwhile journey any time of the year.
“Whether it is delving deep into the rich culture and history of the Hualapai tribe, the adrenaline rush of a Hualapai River Runners whitewater rafting trip, or the thrill and excitement of the Grand Canyon Skywalk, Grand Canyon Resort Corporation has been proud to make it available to adventurous souls from all walks of life,” said Turner.
An anniversary celebration for the April 20 event is currently being planned.