We had the pleasure of speaking with Rachel, a tour guide for our Grand Canyon camping tours. I would love to tell you how much she loves her work, for her to be able to take customers on a journey of the southwestern United States, but her first hand narrative speaks for itself. These tour guides absolutely love what they do and transcend that feeling into the experience of the customers. Whether guests are first time campers or life-long adventurers, you will not be disappointed by the sights, the company, and the service.
It’s 5 am on a summer Tuesday morning and I have just woken up in what has to be my absolute favorite place to wake up in the entire world – Monument Valley, Utah. A few years ago the Navajo run campground on the rim of Monument Valley was bulldozed in favor of a large hotel. I was devastated but determined to be able to offer guests the same sunrise opportunity that I have been fortunate to have experienced many, many times over. I, along with my group of 13 campers, are set up in the primitive campground which remains open right on the rim with a fantastic view of the valley without having to leave your tent! I can see the tips of the tents we pitched on a ledge below the rim. I can see the outline of the monuments and the sky behind them changing from midnight blue to orange to daylight as the sun rises right behind the left and right mitten. I can sense the wonder they are experiencing as I listen to the gasps of amazement and the endless clicking of their cameras. I am glad we camped here.
It’s nearing 6am, the sun has risen, and my clients – having witnessed this almost too beautiful sunrise from their sleeping bags – are jostling around with hot teas, excited because today we are going to the Grand Canyon. I know what lies ahead and am excited for them because in about 4 hours they will be flying high above the Grand Canyon aboard state of the art helicopters witnessing one the most awe inspiring examples of the forces of nature on the planet. At 277 miles long and over a mile deep, the Grand Canyon can only be described as AWESOME!
At the Grand Canyon, we take a short hike and eat pizza on the rim of the canyon while we watch the sunset (always a highlight!) before we head off to our wooded campsite for an evening of storytelling, toasting marshmallows and reliving the day around a campfire
I have been leading this group for ten days and we are nearing the end of our adventure together. As I sit around the campfire with them one last time before we head to the bright lights of Las Vegas, I can tell that they have had the time of their lives. I strike up a conversation with my campers, recalling our first night of camping together when two of the thirteen had never camped before. We laugh about how apprehensive they were that first day and how now, after nine nights in a tent, they are seasoned campers! Fully confident in every aspect from choosing their campsite (the flatter the better!), bear proofing all of their personal scented belongings to the trailer (so as not to attract an unwanted visit by a curious bear in the middle of the night), learning how to operate a propane stove for their cups of tea and toasted bagels in the morning, to becoming unfazed by the occasional coyote howling or the scuffling of an unknown creature outside their tent in the night. They are all pros and are already talking about taking their next adventure!
What an incredible experience to be able to witness the sunrise and sunset as nature intended, and not around buildings, houses, and trees when living in a city. It is no wonder that the tour guides leading guests in the southwestern desert love having others experience what they see on a frequent basis. Each sunrise and sunset is as spectacular and unique as the last one. Don’t be afraid to venture into the wild! Muster up that adventurous spirit and enjoy a journey into the natural wonders of the southwestern desert and canyon lands of the United States. With Rachel as an example, you can be sure that you will be well taken care of and enjoy wonderful sights, and have an incredible learning experience.