Our last week in the states is highly dominated by national park visits. Luckily, this weekend is Veteransday Weekend meaning all state-run national parks have no entrance fee. This way, we’re saving a lot of money (which we can later spend in Las Vegas).
We started off with Arches National Park in Utah, known for it's naturally - through erosion - created sandstone arches. They range from thick, large arches reaching great heights all the way to thin delicate structures looking like they’ll crumble any minute. Very impressive. The road led us further south to the state border of Arizona where we visited Monument Valley, a national park owned and run by Navajo natives. The location is well-known from various western movie sets. The vastness of this land is overwhelming.
Next up: Lower Antelope Canyon. This is by far the most interesting natural formation I have ever seen. The canyon is formed by flash floods and air passing through its extremely narrow cracks creating beautiful abstract shapes and forms. In fact it's so narrow as to only allow one person to pass through certain sections. It truly is a magical place.
The fourth canyon on our tour is Bryce Canyon in Utah. This too was formed by tectonic movement and the shifting of various sediment layers throughout the millennia. The color play between red, white and green - along with many patches of snow - left a memorable experience on me. We took the peek-a-boo trail for roughly 3 hours in the afternoon; temperatures varied from ’fairly warm, I'll take of my sweater’ to ’better put on my gloves’.
The final visit was Grand Canyon. To be honest, it's not as impressive as the other canyons except for its shear size. It really is grand and sadly also overrun by tourists; even on a Tuesday afternoon in November.