In 2013, my family and I visited Page, Arizona, home of Antelope Canyon. Popular with photographers, Antelope Canyon is a famous slot canyon located on Native American lands. Formed by the erosion of sandstone (by water, wind, and sand), Antelope Canyon has two parts: an upper and lower canyon. According to Wikipedia, lower Antelope Canyon “is longer, narrower in spots, and even footing is not available in all areas. At the end, the climb out requires several flights of stairs.” Most people visit the upper canyon, as we did.
We took our tour with Antelope Canyon Tours, which lasts about 90 minutes. We hopped aboard their trucks for the short drive from the road into the sandy landscape, towards the mouth of the canyon.
The photo above is the mouth to Upper Antelope Canyon. Sightseeing through the canyon is an easy walk on packed sand – no hiking or climbing is required. We did not take the photographer’s tour. That tour has fewer people, is longer, and is scheduled to accommodate the best lighting within the canyon. Please note, as there are other tour companies guiding tours, yours will not be the only tour group within the canyon. As a result, it can be difficult to get a photo without people in it. If you desire photos of only landscape, you basically have to forget about the tour and learning about the canyon and just stay behind the group.
Our tour guide threw some sand up on the ledges in the photo below to create the ‘cascading sand’ effect in the photo below.
As you can tell, it was not a bright, sunny day for us. Our photos were lacking in the bright orange color that is often photographed in the canyon. We walked through the canyon to the other side and got a quick photo of the back side, before walking back through.
Along the tour, the guides would show us images that can be seen within the walls. Looking at a wall in a certain light or in a certain way would yield slight resemblances to certain people or things. Native cultural stories were told, as well as explanations of the canyon’s history and geology.
It was amazing to see the ripples within the sandstone and the maze of corridors within. It’s definitely a unique place to visit.
If you are a big fan of the desert, geology or photography, this is an amazing place to visit.
Have you toured the canyon? What was your favorite aspect? Let me know in the comments.