|Since Arizona doesn’t participate in Daylight Savings Time, it starts getting light here at 5:15 am. That just ain’t right. The sun started peeking through the blinds and woke me up, and since we had the alarm set for 7:30, 5:15 is just not right.
We slowly got our act together and actually got to the train station a little early for our 9:15 boarding call. It left right at 9:30 and we were on our way for the 65 mile trip to Canyon Village on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. It was just over 2 hours to CV and the trip took us through Ponderosa Pine forest, Juniper forest and high desert prairie. It was a beautiful trip - we saw some antelope but that was about it wildlife-wise - and the weather today could not have been better; it was sunny, upper 70’s, a little breeze and some photogenic clouds. The 11 car train was pulled by an 80 year old steam engine which was pretty cool. At every crossing there were people taking pictures and waving – it was quite the sight. The car itself was great; comfy seats, big windows and a smooth ride. We got the cheap seats ($75 per person) but for more $$ you can ride in the Observation Car, First Class or Luxury - we chose the cheapo and were more than happy with that decision.
Once we got to CV we immediately went to the Arizona Room for a pretty good lunch. Michele had a Roast Beef sammich and I had Pork Tacos with rice, beans and cornbread. The cornbread was probably the highlight of the meal – I even got the server to sneak me another piece. I hope Michele tipped him well. We wandered along the Rim Trail for a couple hours and finally, after 2 trips, got to see 2 California Condors. They were pretty high up, but I now have photographic proof that they exist here. Last year we sat through the ranger talk, learned all about them, and never saw one.
The return trip left at 3:30 and got back to the station at about 5:50, we got in the Jeepster, drove the short 10 minute drive back to the bus, grilled some pork chops, cleaned up and that was it. And after this update is done, I think we are too.
We are heading toward Las Vegas tomorrow. Don’t know if we are going to stay in town or stay near the Hoover Dam because we plan on touring it on Tuesday, but it will be somewhere that direction. And if I read the map right, we get to drive over the new Hoover Dam Bypass Bridge on the way there. Cool.