Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Christmas Gift: A Storm in the Grand Canyon

We journeyed across three states for the opportunity to see the precious treasure that is the Grand Canyon. Our trip happened to coincide with the arrival of an intense series of storms that have wreaked havoc across California and the southwest, and we reached the rim just in time to see the storm reach the Grand Canyon area. It was cold and windy, and darkness was spreading across the North Rim, about 14 miles away as the raven flies, but ravens weren't out and about on a day like this one. We were, though.
In a matter of minutes, all that was beautiful about the canyon was obscured by the growing darkness. The colorful formations that record some 2 billion years of Earth history disappeared under the shadow of the present moment in time.
At numerous points, rain and clouds started pouring over the rim, and nothing could be seen through the impenetrable fog. The sign at the canyon overlook became an ironic commentary (which reminded me of another sign that I saw at the entrance station: "Bad weather predicted; visibility impaired; no refunds).
The rain came hard, cold and fast, and we had to retreat from the edge, seeking comfort in warmer and drier places. The storm was in control, and we had no way of knowing what was coming next. The future was obscured...
There are gifts of many kinds; even in the darkest moments, there is sometimes beauty and optimism. Next...the hope of morning.


Gaelyn said...

Thanks for the canyon fix Garry. What a wonderful place to spend Christmas. Or any time for that matter. Wish I were there. We are only 4 hours south.

Plan a visit the end of next month.

Merry Christmas to you and yours!

Nina F said...

I agree with Gaelyn - Thanks for the Grand Canyon fix. I was supposed to go there too, but got sick and had to cancel. Always sad to miss going to the Canyon but your photos definitely help.
And now the storm has passed!

trav4adventures said...

Yes, dark, but beautiful! I love to see clouds on "my" mountains!