Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Rock Paparazzi

Justin, my parents, and I went to Arizona for Thanksgiving this year. We had some Southwest tickets that we needed to use and decided on the Grand Caynon! I haven't been since 7th grade and Justin has never been. We flew into Phoenix and picked up the rental car and drove to Flagstaff. We stopped in Rock Springs to have Thanksgiving lunch (or blueberry pancakes and potatoes for me!) at the famous Rock Springs Cafe. They are known for their pies and boy did they look good.

p.s. Once you are done with this post you will understand why I called it "The Rock Paparazzi" haha

Rock Springs Cafe
  Our next stop on the way was Montezuma's Castle - a national park that contains well preserved cliff dwellings that were built around 700AD. It's such an interesting and beautiful place.

Cliff dwellings at Montezuma's Castle
Beautiful Fall Foliage
River by the dwellings where they got their water from - so pretty
 Once we got to Flagstaff we plopped ourselves in the hotel bar (with free drinks!) and watched the A&M - t.u. game. Unfotunately it wasn't the outcome we were hoping for but oh well! Maybe next time (if UT decides to quit being babies about the whole thing).
On Friday we drove from Flagstaff to Grand Canyon National Park. It was SUCH a pretty drive! I think Justin is ready to move - especially since it snows there!

Mt. Elden

Justin kicking the snow on the side of the road!

Pretty drive through the Ponderosa Pine Forest - largest in the continental US!

 Once we arrived at the Grand Canyon we stopped at the visitors center and then went directly to the rim. I took LOTS of pictures and they all start to look the same so I'll try and limit the number I share :) It was kind of hazy because they were doing some controlled burning.

Our first view from Mather Point
The people look so small

Dad & Me

One of my favs from the day :)

Mom & Dad!

In the center of the picture at the top of the rocks there is a building - it's the North Rim Lodge - about 10 miles from where we were standing - love my zoom!

Bright Angel Lodge
The Colorado River - you could actually hear it - quite amazing considering we were about a mile above

We were killing time but boy was it COLD

Ok do they really have to say DON'T DRINK THE TOILET WATER??
 We left about an hour before sunset so no sunset pictures :( But we ate at this great local place - Granny's Closet - for dinner that night in Flagstaff. Saturday morning we got up and started our trip back to Phoenix. We went back through Sedona and boy was the trip beautiful. We stopped in Sedona for a couple of hours and shopped and snacked - it was a great day!
Drive from Flagstaff to Sedona - changing scenery

Slide Rock State Park

Oak Creek Vista

Really cool bridge @ Oak Creek Vista - right outside of Sedona


Shops (& Jeep Tour) in Sedona

Love the Christams Tree with the scenery in the background!

Chapel of the Holy Cross, Sedona

More pretty scenery on the way to Phoenix

Pretty colors!
That evening in Phoneix we went to Z-Tejas for dinner in Tempe and they were having a Christmas Parade & Tree Lighting ceremony - it was a great end to a great Holiday trip! Justin and I are considering making an annual Thanksgiving trip because we had so much fun! We'll just have to see what next year brings!