! Off in the distance our destination appeared...a crack in the wall of the red rocks. The temperature immediately dropped from 3 digits. Instructions were given as how to best photograph the canyon. Simply put the canyon was amazing! Yes the canyon was crowded with tourists, but the formations were otherworldly, the lighting was surreal, and the feel of the canyon was mystical. Stomachs called for some attention and we ate at the Ranch House Grill...good old-fashioned food in large quantities-perfect for teenage boys! Then Horseshoe Bend was next. Up the sandy hill we trudged and then we walked to the edge...wow no fences, just a beautiful view of the amazing color of the water in contrast to the red canyon walls. Back to the car we trudged and melted. On the way back to camp, we stopped to explore Glenn Canyon Dam. Awesome engineering feat-the air conditioner that is. Oh yeah, and the dam was pretty cool too. We headed back to camp where we swam at swim beach and played 3 flags up...so fun! The water temperature was perfect. After getting cleaned up for dinner, we reveled in the air conditioner in lodge restaurant and enjoyed beautiful sunset views and eavesdropping on the pretentious group of house boaters seated next to us. Our country's birthday celebration was next complete with 2 sets of fireworks over the water...happy birthday America! Back to camp we went where we spent a much cooler, but much windier night in the tent. Although I thought we were in Kansas, the tent stayed strong and I awoke to a slight drizzle that I feared would develop into something much wetter so I roused the troops and they helped put up the rain fly to avert a soaking which never came thankfully.
Before the tent turned to a sauna, we woke up and started our day. Yummy camp breakfast was prepared, eaten, and cleaned up. Off to our Antelope Canyon tour. Into Page we went. The city of Page was bustling with small town 4th of July parade excitement. We found our meeting spot and as we checked in the Chief told us that he has good news and bad news. The good news would be that we would still be going to the canyon. The bad? Their company truck broke down. So the recommendation to another company was made; the company was nameless, the directions sketchy, and our hopes sinking for this event that we planned our entire summer vacation around. Following chief brown-bottom's minimal directions we pulled up a parking lot labeled Upper Antelope canyon, paid our $6 admission to the parking lot. The $6 PER PERSON admission to the parking lot...proceeded to the shack where we bought our tickets for the tour. We were wedged in 7 people per bench and off we went. The 3 mile trip through deep sand was crunchy to taste (sand at 45 miles/per hour yields a crunchy reminder that lasts throughout the rest of the day) and wild