Summer is approaching my friends and we are so EXCITED!! The spring season in California is so bi-polar (as it usually is) so on those hot days, it gets us so pumped for the summer time 😉 We have a lot of awesome places to visit this summer and we can’t wait to share them with you! But for now here is our newest adventure…ARIZONA! Scott and I have never traveled to AZ together so we were really excited about this one! The drive from LA to AZ is about 8 hours, so we were fully prepared for the long journey ahead 🙂 On this trip we had one of our friends accompany us who is also a photographer 🙂 His name is Adam and we have gone on lots of trips with him before (like Colorado) so you might recognize him from previous pictures & videos. Anyways I’m gonna get into the break down of what we did so here we g o .
We planned to leave on Friday morning after Scott was done teaching. It was the last day before his spring break so we were on the spring break fever, ready to get out! As soon as Scott finished class, he came back home to pick me up (drag me out of bed) & throw all of our bags in the car and head to Adam’s house. We got to Glendale to grab Adam and got the last of his things packed in my car. We had hoped to be on the road at 11am and by luck, we actually made it! We were all super excited in the car and spent the next 8 hours listening to music and talking the whole way there. By the time we finally reached Utah, we were itching to get out of the car and get some photos of all the cool rocks in the distance. We found a cool section of the highway on the Utah/Arizona boarder where we got to take some pictures and drone for a few minutes before getting back in the car (by this time the sun was going down so we got some nice golden hour shots.) We then continued on with another 2.5 hours to go before reaching Page, Arizona where we would be staying for the next 5 days. We arrived in Page around 10pm to check into our motel, and were pretty excited, but tired at the same time so we just relaxed in the room until we all fell asleep.
Saturday morning, our first full day in Page, we let ourselves recharge and sleep in till 8-8:30am, but had promised to be on the road by 9am so we could get an early start on the day. Our plan was to drive down highway 89 until we got to the Vermillion Cliffs. As we started our drive, we could finally see what it looked like outside in the daylight and were amazed by all the beautifully sculpted red rocks that were amongst us in the distance. Within the first 10 minutes of our drive, we pulled over at a viewpoint to take in the atmosphere. At this time I really got to understand why people love visiting Arizona. The atmosphere and energy that you absorb from the rocks around you really lift your spirits up (well for me at least) I felt such a euphoric feeling looking out into the distance and just sitting in silence. Scott and Adam were having a good time as well, doing some drone work and taking pictures of the view, I could tell this was going to be a really good trip. We got back in the car and continued down the highway, we saw lots of Native Americans selling goods on the side of the road as we continued on our drive. A little farther down the highway, we started to drive down into what seemed like a massive canyon, the rocks walls started getting taller and taller and there were even bigger ones out in the distance. Once we were on flat ground, we took the liberty of taking some road shots, a classic in the “travel instagram game” LOL. We spent some time messing around vlogging and just having a really good time exploring.
We continued until we came across the Marble Canyon Bridge, a HUGE bridge that the Colorado river flows under. We vlogged our time on the bridge and took some pictures too. We figured we would keep driving down the highway until we were ready to turn around and head back so we drove for another 20 minutes to see more of the Vermillion Cliffs area. We were getting hungry so we decided to head back and get some lunch 🙂 After lunch we decided to scout some areas for our sunrise session we had planned for the next morning. Scott thought a spot overlooking Lake Powell would be great place for photography, so we headed there from the motel. Before Lake Powell, there is a dam that neighbors called the Glen Canyon Dam, so we thought, why not check out the dam too. We parked the car and walked on the bridge to get a good view of everything, it resembled the Hoover dam to me (even though I’ve never been) & (probably all dams look alike) but it was really interesting to see this giant thing right in front of you. After we got some pictures, we ran back to the car and continued on to the viewpoint. Once we got there, we scoped out the area to see if it would be a good spot for the morning and guess what.. it was! LOL we could see a big portion of the lake, it was a really nice viewpoint and a prime spot for the morning. The last thing on our agenda for the day was to get a good spot to watch the sunset at Horseshoe Bend. Maybe you have heard of this spot? It’s a pretty popular photography spot in Page AZ and tons of people travel to this area for this spot alone! We were super excited to head here, what we weren’t excited for was all the other tourists!! There were lots of cars in the parking lot, so we knew we were in for an over populated spot. Once we got out of the car, we had a little bit of a walk (maybe about 15 or 20 minutes) up a hill and then down all the way to the view point where horseshoe bend was visible. It was a very crowded place to be, we walked around for a little bit looking for a good spot to set our things down and set up the tripods. We ended up getting a really good spot and laid a blanket down to sit on.
From that spot, we spent a good 2 hours capturing the sun going down. I will say that yes, it is SO beautiful there, but at the same time it is terrifying. If you fall over the edge (which is literally right in front of you) your dead. There is nothing there to protect you, and all I could think about was how if one of us accidentally tripped while we were walking over to the edge we would just die. Even thinking about it now gives me so much anxiety. LOL Regardless, I’m really glad we went and got to enjoy horseshoe bend together. The sun had gone down and we were all super hungry, we had a little bit of a trek back to the car which made us even more hungry once we got in the car, and we knew the perfect place to go to..SONIC. BTW THERE ARE NO SONICS ANYWHERE BY WHERE WE LIVE SO THIS WAS AN AMAZING PLACE TO GO FOR DINNER 🙂 Even though I don’t eat meat, I just love Sonic haha maybe it’s just old fashion drive thru or the candy slushes but Sonic knows whats up 😉 After eating dinner we headed back to the room to get some sleep, because in the morning we were heading to the Lake Powell lookout for sunrise.
We got up around 5:30am and left the room by 6am, we were lucky that Lake Powell was about 10 minutes from our motel so we didn’t have to wake up too early. We arrived at the lookout and were greeted by a cold chill outside. Scott set up his camera for a time-lapse as did Adam. The sunrise that morning was very beautiful and I felt really lucky to be there 🙂
Once the sun was up and we were happy with our shots, we headed back to the motel for a little nap before driving to the GRAND CANYON 🙂 We woke up & got out of the room by 10am to grab some subway before hitting the road for the next 2.5 hours. None of us had ever been to the Grand Canyon, so we were eager to see what it was really like. When we got to the park entrance, Scott and I decided we were gonna buy an “annual pass” so that we could visit the parks as many times as we wanted for a whole year for just $80! Since we go to sooo many national parks, we figured we would buy it to save money! Also, I want to add that we had entered in from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon and that is the part that we explored on this day, (the North Rim is another option for visiting the Grand Canyon, it’s just not open year round so be sure to check before you plan a trip). After we entered, we checked out the first lookout. We weren’t surprised that the park was PACKED with people. Once we had walked to the first viewpoint to see the canyon, we were swarmed by people trying to take selfies there themselves. It was a little overwhelming and not the experience I had imagined it would be.
The view was pretty awesome seeing it for the first time, we were only there for a few minutes before deciding to head to the car to go to another look out that was less crowded. We continued on the road and stopped at a few more look outs, each one having what seemed to be a pretty similar view. The farther down the road, the less crowded each spot was, which was nice, and we were able to feel a better connection to what our eyes were seeing. Taking in the Grand Canyon is something you really have to stare at for a long period of time to comprehend how it formed and the unique beauty of it. While we were checking out different view points, we had found a spot we would return to later in the day for sunset pictures, so we were happy about that. We spent a lot of the day exploring the roads and some of the “tourist” stores and places. There is a big train station where a train drops off visitors from a town miles away which I thought was pretty neat 🙂 We took a break for a while and got some food at a grocery store and just relaxed in the car for awhile before getting ready to head back to our sunset spot. I think the highlight from visiting the Grand Canyon that day was going back to that spot we found to watch the sunset. It was a great view and a few others were set up to watch the sunset there, so it felt like a nice community had formed together to enjoy a sunset 🙂
Our overall feeling towards visiting the Grand Canyon is that yes, definitely do so if you can, but expect to be joining a lot of people crowding the same area as you and if your visiting the southern rim, you wont be doing much hiking in the area. It’s more of a drive and stop kind of park. Our day had come to an end and a long car ride was ahead of us. Once we had arrived back in the room we were pooped from the day’s adventure.
The next morning we really enjoyed ourselves and slept in till about 10-10:30am 🙂 Our plan originally was to book an Antelope Canyon tour for the day, but we mistakenly didn’t sign up in time and the reservations were all full. SO we had a bright idea of checking out a hike that resembled Antelope Canyon not far from our motel. The hike was called Waterhole Canyon, we had seen people hiking down it the first day we got to Page and were curious on what it would be like. But first we had to get some breakfast! We ventured out to Denny’s for some breakfast before figuring out how we would spend our day on the hike. After eating, we saw a lookout that seemed cool, so we parked to check it out, and I’m SO glad we did. It was a perfect view of the Glen Canyon Dam and then the river leading out in the canyon. It was such a beautiful spot we had to stay for awhile to take pictures and videos here.
We really, really liked this spot a lot and we didn’t even know it was so close to our motel! After a good 45mins of taking pictures, we finally got in the car to drive to the Waterhole Canyon hike. Once we got there, we noticed a sign that said “permit mandatory” so we had a wild goose chase going back into town looking for an office to obtain this “permit”, long story short, we got the permit legally, and drove back to the hike entrance (More info on the canyon and the permit here). Once we parked we made our way down a pathway that lead us to the beginning of rock slide area where we would have to hike down. Luckily, it wasn’t so sketchy and was totally doable. We slowly made our way down and with each step, got more excited to see what was at the bottom. After our lil’ hike down, we entered the slot canyon that was exactly what we were looking for. The bright orange/red walls were illuminated by the sunlight and made for an amazing canyon atmosphere.
We were loving this place and took lots of pictures at the very beginning of the hike, we didn’t know which way to go down so we went towards the mountains first. The walls of the slot canyon varied from wide open to tight and slender, where you would have to angle your body to pass through, we were totally loving every minute of it. We had gone down a little ways to where we saw other hikers making there way down, we thought we had reached the other entrance to this hike and decided to go the other way from which we came from and to go as far as we could. We continued on, still in amazement of this place and how lucky we were to be there. Of course, we were bummed we didn’t get to go on the Antelope Canyon tour because the photography there is pretty incredible. But being in the slot canyon with almost no one around us and taking as much time as we wanted seemed so much better and more of our style of exploring. It was definitely a blessing in disguise, now looking back at it. The rest of the hike was an adventure we couldn’t have ever imagined, from an old car stuck in the canyon blocking the way, that you physically had to climb over, to other makeshift ladders you had to climb down to continue on, to a dead cow blocking the way, to a rope and ladder you would have to climb down to, this hike was probably one of the most adventurous things we have ever done! for real! We vlogged most of the adventure, so be prepared to see the whole thing in the AZ vlog 🙂
This day was probably all of our favorites. After our hike we were super hungry and were craving Mexican food so we checked out this really authentic place called El Tapatio, if you are going to Page you have to eat here!!! Our food was amazing and we were ready to call it a night, food babies and all. We had a super early morning planned for the next day so we all got some good sleep that night.
Tuesday morning, our alarms went off at 3:45am. Monument Valley was a 2 hour drive from Page, so we set off on our sunrise mission. Monument Valley is a really photogenic place where big rock monuments are formed and are famous for looking so cool. We wanted to make sure we got the beautiful early morning light, so we had to leave really, really early. Scott was driving and I was in the passenger seat, I tried my best to stay awake the whole time because I felt bad having Scott drive so early by himself. The whole drive was pretty much in darkness which can be pretty difficult, but we made pretty good time and talked almost the whole way there. I remember seeing our first big rock monument and thinking, wow this is so weird and cool at the same time..we had finally entered the parks entrance and went straight to the visitors center. From there we had a really cool view of 3 monuments in the distance. Once we parked and got out of the car, we realized how freezing it was outside, and not to mention how windy it was! Scott set up his tripod for a time-lapse and ran back into the car to keep warm 🙂 We had a really good view watching the sunrise and a fun time running back and forth from outside to inside trying to stay warm while taking pictures.
Once the sun was up we got ready to start on the “Monument Valley Scenic Loop.” The road for the drive was unpaved and super bumpy at times, but we had a fun seeing the different monuments and taking pictures at some of the spots. One spot in particular, we got a little creative and put Adam’s textile blanket around me for some Navajo vibes, it was a really awesome place to check out and take pictures at.
Another fun spot we wanted to see was a long road that lead into Monument Valley, we had seen lots of pictures taken here and wanted to try to re-create one. After the scenic loop drive, we drove off towards another entrance to get to that iconic road spot. To our surprise, there were a few other cars there running out and taking pictures as well! We kinda felt like “oh gosh, we are gonna be like everyone else taking the same pic..” but decided what the heck who cares and did it anyways! We can put our own spin on it right!? 😉
If your interested in Monument Valley, we think it’s a really cool spot to check out and thankfully not too many tourists were there early in the morning so that’s always a plus! We had all had a super long day and were ready to make the drive back towards Page. On our last night in Page, Scott and Adam went to a dive bar to celebrate an eventful 4 day trip, while I stayed in bed watching random youtube videos 🙂 Our plan in the morning was to check out and hit the road for an 8 hour car ride back to LA! Going to Arizona was such a wonderful place to spend “spring break” and if you’re looking for a red rock desert vibe, Arizona is the place for you. I’m really excited to plan more trips back in AZ because I loved it so much! That’s pretty much the write up from the trip guys! We hope you have an awesome week and look forward to all the content we will be pumping out for the next few weeks! Stay tuned guys!!!