Saturday, May 19, 2018

May 11, 2018 - Page, AZ

I was planning on getting early this morning to try and catch the sunrise over Lake Powell, but my body was in knockdown mode.

It was still very windy and hazy that we decided not to go visit Horseshoe Bend.  We went there last year when the weather was better.  Always another time, right?

Since there was a cancellation on one full hookup site we were moved to Loop A site #1 that had a better view of Lake Powell and the mountains.  And, it is much closer to the office/store.

We packed our lunches, snacks and drinks before we left to go to Ken's Tours to talk about getting tickets to see Lower Slot Canyons.  The online reservation was cut off this morning, so I was not able to reserve tickets.  I saw that there were very few time slots available.

At Ken's Tours we asked if we could go on a 3 pm tour (it was 12:45 pm at that time), but Erwin asked the desk if it was possible for us to go on a 1:30 pm tour.  We were ushered to a waiting area to wait and see if there was a cancellation or no show.  We waited for like 15 minutes before we were told that we can get the 1:30 pm tickets. Backpacks,  purses, GoPro, disposable cameras and tripods are not allowed.  I had a purse with me and the female guide told me that I could not bring it.  Thanks to Erwin's idea it was turned into a fanny pack (permitted).  The admission fee for each person is $40 plus $8 permit fee and taxes.

I had my Canon 80D camera with 18-300mm lens, but brought wide eye lens (11-24mm) along just in case.  Erwin brought two bottles of water.

Kevin, our tour guide, briefly explained what to expect once we get to the top of the Canyons.  He helped me set up the correct white balance for our iPhones and my Canon camera.

Winds were blowing hard as we were herded to where the ladder down to Lower Slot Canyons was. Taking pictures when you are on a ladder or steps is strictly forbidden.  Safety comes first!

After we got down to the base we were in awe of the wave patterns that were created by flash floods.  Kevin took his time in showing us best photo spots.  The colors were magnificent!  It was more than an hour and 15 minutes before we exited the Canyons.  If any of you plan on visiting Page be sure to reserve tickets to Lower Slot Canyons.
We had supper at Big John's Texas BBQ (we ate there last year).  We elected to dine inside because it was still very windy.  Erwin had a platter of pulled pork sandwich, 3 baby back ribs, potato salad and beans.  I had 6 baby back ribs with two sides.  The ribs were SO tender and fell off the bones easily.

After dinner we shopped at Safeway to pick up fresh vegetables, meats, snacks and a case of water in preparation for our next destination in Utah.  The town we will be camping in for 2 nights is a very small town with the population of 133.

Just before the sunset we drove up to Wahweap Overlook to enjoy the view of Lake Powell. The winds must have blown more than 60 miles per hour.  I stood on top of a boulder for picture taking and the wind tried to push me off.
It was around 11 pm that we went out for astrophotography.  Not too far from the campground is a beach site and I took some pictures of the stars.  There were light pollutions in the background, and Erwin suggested to go to Wahweap Hoodoos on Highway 89, not too far from Glen Canyon National Recreation Area.  It was around midnight when I was done.  Both of us were so tired!

It looked like E.T. was trying to call home
Even at midnight the winds were still packing punches when we got back to the campground.  The weather forecast called for a cool weather and less winds tomorrow.

May 10, 2018 - Flagstaff, AZ to Page, AZ

We checked out of Woody Mountain Campground at 9:45 am, took I-40E toward Highway 89 North (Exit #201) to avoid traffic in downtown Flagstaff.  

We went to Maverick Gas Station on Highway 89 to get diesel fill-up ($3.07) because in Page the average price per gallon for diesel was about $3.29.

The drive along Highway 89 was pleasant and the views were stunning.  Even though we drove on this same highway last year we still did not remember much of the scene!

Yesterday Erwin made a reservation for a site at Wahweap Campground in Glen Canyon Recreation Area by Lake Powell for 2 nights  The sites with full hookups were already booked, so they put us to dry camp area (no hookups).  The use of generator is allowed between 6 am-10 pm, so that will work for us if we ever need electricity.
We arrived Wahweap Campground at 1:45 pm, went straight to the office.  While there we asked if it was possible to move us to sites with full hookups.  No luck; however, there was a cancellation for tomorrow. We were assigned to site #93 in Loop 4 area.
View of Lake Powell from our campsite
The site #93 was in a poor shape, but Erwin managed to get our Lil' Home set up good..  We had a nice view of Lake Powell and the mountains in the distance.

After late lunch I went out by myself to explore some areas and to take pictures.  I crossed the Glen Canyon Dam Bridge, then turned left to a dirt road that leads to a trailhead at the end.  There is a large parking lot with a good view of the bridge and the dam.
Glen Canyon Dam
Close-up shot of the dam
Marina at Lake Powell

There were hundreds and hundreds of houseboats
moored at the marina
After supper Erwin and I went out for a ride to some viewpoints along Lake Powell to admire the scenery just as the sun was setting down.  Afterwards we went to downtown Page to get gas fill-up for the Pilot, then to Walmart to get snacks and drinks for tomorrow's outing.
After coming back home to drop off the groceries I went off by myself to try and se if |I could get good pictures of the stars,  After several tries I finally got one I liked.  The MIlky Way, at that time, had not appeared.  
Two shooting stars!


Miles driven: 150 from Flagstaff to Page
Campground: Wahweap Campground at Lake Powell - site #93 (Dry camp)