After Arches I spent the night in Canyonlands National Park which is about forty minutes from Arches. It was the coldest night yet, and the first time I felt a little uneasy about tenting. I was sharing the camp sight with one other person which is fine, he was stargazing, but I got there after dark so I was unable to orient myself which I like to do. I feel like I get smarter every time I camp - like putting my clothes for the next day under me for extra cushion from the rocky desert and so they are warm in the morning. Aren't I smart? (My mom is yelling right now that I learned that under her rule as my Girl Scout Leader many years ago.) Also - I always keep my car key remote next to me in the night so that if I hear the breathing of an animal next to my tent I can push the button that will make my car beep and flash. I've used this technique once - it really worked scaring the wind away that sounded like a pack of coyotes outside my tent at four in the morning when I was half asleep. Anyway - it was cold and I didn't spend long there the following morning before speeding off to the Grand Canyon.
I arrived right at sunset and watched from Lipan Point as the canyon turned the most beautiful colors. The next morning I went down the canyon about a mile and a half on the South Kaibab trail. There is no better way to start the day than with a hike with beautiful scenery. As beautiful as it was though I found myself missing the "positive shapes" of Arches and Rocky Mountain National Park. I think this is really interesting since I am a very "additive" painter.
The most enjoyable part of the day for me came with a long but relaxing walk along the rim. One of the shuttles wasn't running so there was a whole section of the canyon that was only accessible if you had a car or wanted to walk so there were a lot less people along this path. I walked for about six miles along the Rim Trail and I really enjoyed this solitude and discovering new spots along the canyon. I've been doing a ton of walking/hiking. That combined with the fact that I missed Thanksgiving this year means I can over indulge on eggnog, pie and cookies when I'm home for the holidays...right? RIGHT!