After spending the night at Walmart, we did some shopping the next morning at Walmart and Costco where we returned our GPS unit as it had stopped working, we had purchased it less than a year ago in Las Vegas. After this we headed towards Bullhead City.
First we drove east to Winterhaven, just west of Yuma but still in California for a couple of days to do laundry, catch up on the world through the internet. From here we left early in the morning to go to McDonalds in Yuma for breakfast where it just happened, by chance we ran into Juan Carlos and Lupita who were on their way to Phoenix after spending a couple of day in San Filipe watching the Baja 250. They joined us for breakfast before we again said our goodbye’s.
After breakfast Juan Carlos & Lupita went east and we turned north up the HWY95 following the Colorado River up to Lake Havasu where we stopped to visit London Bridge and enjoy the scenery and flora.
We continued north from here towards Bullhead City, camping at AVI Casino just south of there for the night, we thought about staying a second night but it was going to be 38C/100F so decided to continue north for something a little cooler.
We drove to Kingman where we stopped in at the Route 66 museum.
After this we continued up Route 66 to Grand Canyon Caverns, we had no idea these caverns existed until a couple of days prior when looking at the map, we prefer to take the side roads instead of the main highways as you tend to see more.
These caverns were discovered in 1927 by Walter Peck. He began the first tours shortly after his discovery when he realized there was no gold. He and his brother Miles lowered tourists into the hole in the ground on a rope. We entered via an elevator which opened in 1962. These caverns have been dry for thousands of years so nothing new has formed since.
The teacup handle below is a very rare form of Selemite known as Helecite, it is hollow inside and very fragile.
There have been a number of weddings performed on the platform below. The first was on April 15, 1977.
The Halls of Gold, is the largest room at 210 yds/192m long. There are enough civilian defence supplies here to support 2000 people for two (2) weeks. These supplies were brought here during the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962. This food is perfectly preserved due to the dry cool air.
The Snow Ball Palace took 6 million years to form. These formations are called Snowball or Cave Clouds/Cauliflower.
It is also possible to stay here and sleep overnight.
The Mummified Bobcat fell into the natural entrance about 1850. It lived for a time as it was found a short distance from the entrance. It died within 3 weeks as its lungs dried up and it could not breath.
Prehistoric Ground Sloth. The giant ground sloth, has been extinct for at least 11,00 years. This one fell into the natural entrance between 20,000 and 11,000 years ago and decayed. The bones were found in late 1950’s and were sent to the University of Arizona for identification. This is a life size replica that was built in trade for the bones.
Artists impression of the Giant Ground Sloth.
Winter Crystal. This is the rarest form of Selenite in the caverns and is only found in this spot.
There is also an area where you can book to have a meal deep underground and is in close proximity where you can sleep for a night.
From we continued to the Grand Canyon Village it was late in the afternoon therefore we collected information about the canyon, various hikes and scenic lookouts. We tried to get a spot in the campground here but it was full, they informed us of some wild camping spots just outside the park on BLM land, perfect right up our ally.
Elk at the visitor’s center, there are signs all over to stay away from the animals and do not feed them. Some woman was letting them drink water out of a plastic bottle, go figure???
Next morning, we headed to the Grand Canyon to do a hike. We had decided on the Bright Angel Trail.
After reading the warning signs, with water and munchies in our backpack we set-off, our goal was the rest house which is only 1.5miles/2.4km away, all down hill, this took us approximately 1hour to get there due to photo ops, talking with other hikers and the volunteer park ranger walking our way. There were 3 arches to pass through, we also saw various animals on the path.
The temperature at the top when we set off was 26C/79F, when we reached the rest house it was 32C/90F. We rested, ate munchies and drunk some water. Catherine had some blisters on her heals so the park ranger gave her some blister aids (Bandaids for blisters), after applying them we set-off back up the trail. We can tell you it was a breeze going down but quite the slog back up, this took us nearly 2hours to trek back to the top.
Can you see the people at a lookout point above in the distance?
The Faultline at the opposite side of the Canyon.
This little bird watched us as we ate our munchies, I think it was waiting for us to leave to see if we left any crumbs.
Selfie at the rest house, ready to head back up.
We also spotted this Scorpion on the way back up the trial.
We also spotted some rock Paintings on the way up.
We made it to the top without issue.
There is a train that can be caught in Williams that goes to the Grand Canyon.
Once back at our vehicle we hit the road east towards Page.
Next: Page, Arizona.