A Canyon Caravan Part 9

The River Trip

We planned a river trip at Glen Canyon for the next day. You have to be four or older to do it. It is not a white water trip. It is a float trip. When you are deciding on river trips, do like my yoga teacher says, “Set your intention.” If you want to go fast and be part of the action, this is not a trip for you. We had little kids, and we needed an easy trip. We opted for a different experience on our Yellowstone trip, but that is another story. We almost missed our departure time for this trip. It begins in Page, AZ which is quite far from the Grand Canyon National Park. It took us 2 hours to get there. I was chewing my lower lip feeling responsible for everything. But, all was well. We made it! Then we had to ride a bus to the dam. Then we had to put on hard hats to walk down to the boats because they are working on the dam. We look good in big, blue hard hats. Then we boarded our ship. Okay, it was a float. And, it was blue, too!

It was a beautiful ride, and we were in awe of the canyon around us. It was such an easy view of such beauty. I felt like I should be working or paddling to earn the right to experience it. But, it was just a gift to see. It was a gift to see the children watch the walls around us.


We ate lunch on the boat. The float company provided lemonade and water for us to drink. We floated down river, and then we got to stop on a beach for a break to play for a while. When I put my leg down in the water, immediately it went numb because the river was so frigid!  We were all shocked because swimming outside in Texas in August is like taking a warm bath.

We ran in and out of the water screaming because our legs were numb. The kids were funny to watch swimming in slow-motion back to the beach. It was too cold to just stay in the water. We hiked a little inland where there were some ancient Puebloan petroglyphs to see, and then we were called back to the boat.

We floated on through the canyon, and after a while we came to the launch ramp at Lee’s Ferry. Lee’s Ferry is a historical site where a ferry was operated from 1872-1928. The ferry has a sad sort of history that you can read about here. It was an important ferry crossing because it was a gateway between Arizona and Utah. It was used to quell conflict between the Paiute and the Mormons and by homesteaders on their way to new lives.

We had to get on another bus to get back to our cars which took awhile. The bus drove us through mostly Indian Reservation land, and it was beautiful, arid, canyonland. There was evidence of the rocks shifting and weathering everywhere.

I soaked in as much of the view as I could from the bus, but I couldn’t help feeling very sleepy. It was almost dark by the time we were back in Page, and all the kids were hungry. We called to check on the little ones left with Nana and Papa at the campsite, and they were fine so we decided to eat dinner in Page before heading back. We ate at the Dam Restaurant. We’re dumb. Or at least I am because I was giggling when I read “The Dam Menu.” My brother-in-law got the “Dam Burger.”


All our food was tasty, but we tried to hurry so we could start the trip back to the park. It seemed like a long drive back to the camp. I don’t remember much campfire time that night. We were glad we went, but in the end we all decided it was pretty far and we would’ve liked to have more time in the park instead of this river trip. The kids had a great time nevertheless.

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