Louise Nordström Pettersson - Road trip in America - Part one
I’ve always wanted to go on a road trip to all the famous national parks in America. So when the opportunity came, we booked a trip and jumped on the plane just three weeks later. We landed in Las Vegas, Nevada late at night and picked up our campervan the next day. Our first stop was at the Grand Canyon National Park. I’ve been there once before and it was just as amazing as the first time. The views took my breath away as we drove down the road right next to the edge of the canyon.
After we had driven the fantastic East Rim Drive we decided to head to a campground in the town Page in northern Arizona. There are so many amazing national parks around Page, but we started out in Antelope Canyon the next day.
Ever since I first saw a picture from Antelope Canyon years ago, I’ve always wanted to go there. And I wasn’t disappointed. It was even more beautiful in real life!
You have to take guided tours to be allowed to walk down in the canyons. Our guide was amazing and showed us all kinds of rock formations that had been carved out by nature through the years. It was a challenge to try to capture the beauty of this canyon. The colors are amazing and it’s so much bigger than it looks like in the pictures. I really hope to get back here some day and take one of their guided photo tours.
After a wonderful morning in Antelope Canyon we headed straight to Marble Canyon. We didn’t really know what it was, we only saw it on our map, but it turned out to be pretty cool with giant rocks balancing in the desert.
After a few hours at Marble Canyon we decided to go to the famous Horseshoe Bend to watch the sunset. I’ve seen so many pictures from that place but it turned out to be very dangerous to take pictures there. There are no rails and the ground that you’re standing on is made of some kind of sandstone, which can break and make you fall 300 meters to the ground below. Even though I was to scared to go all the way to the edge it was still a very beautiful place to visit and the sunset over the desert was one of kind.
After a good night sleep we drove all day with a few stops at Navajo National Monument and Canyon de Chelly before we finally arrived at Monument Valley. I’m sure many recognize this iconic view over Monument Valley.
I really wanted to photograph the night sky over these rock formations but it didn’t look like it was going to happen as the clouds kept coming in. We went to get something to eat and when we went outside again some of the clouds had magically disappeared so I could get a glimpse of the stars above.
We woke up to snow the next day. And we were told that there was a big snowstorm coming in so we decided to head to Moab in Utah, a town right next to Arches National Park. We waited for two days until it finally stopped snowing and we could go visit Arches National Park. Our first stop in the park were their most famous arch – Delicate Arch. It was really hard to find the trail in the deep snow, but eventually we got to there.
I really want to visit this park during summer. It wasn’t ideal to go here after a two day snowstorm, so we decided to head back to Monument Valley in the afternoon. The sunset and the night sky didn’t disappoint us.
Our next destination was Phoenix, but on our way there we made a small stop in the middle of nowhere when we saw a sign that said “dinosaur tracks”. I couldn’t believe my eyes when a Native American showed us tracks and fossil skulls from dinosaurs in the desert. It was a surreal experience and I’m so glad we got to see it.
We arrived to a really nice campground in Phoenix just as the sun set. I was amazed by all the giant cactuses and decided to wake up early the next day to watch the sunrise and take some photos.
The view was breathtaking and the cactuses seemed to grow everywhere. I didn’t have much time to take pictures during our stay in Phoenix because we went to see the golf tournament Waste Management Open where you’re not allowed to bring any cameras. But at least I got to witness the beautiful sunsets over Lake Pleasant every night.
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