While most would check out the Grand Canyon in that transition from Spring to Summer when all the rocks and craters are hit by the Arizona sun, going to the Grand Canyon during winter gives quite a spectacle in itself. It also allows you to be immersed with greater tranquility since there are less tourists.
The photos in this post were taken on mid February of 2012, when a lot of the snow in the South Rim of the Grand Canyon has already melted and the air is a lot more bearable. Winter gives a mixture of red rocks, white snow, and the first sprigs of green leaves, a sign that spring is coming soon.
When heading to the Grand Canyon in the Winter Season, ensure that your car (or rental car) is geared up for any patches of snow that you may encounter on the way. Rentals will provide chains if needed.
Weather in the Grand Canyon during winter averages about -8 degrees Celsius (17 degrees Farenheit), so layer your clothing and bring lots of lip balm and petroleum jelly to prevent your nose from drying. Use high traction rubber shoes, too. This will prevent you from slipping from any icy sheets that might careen you into the depths of the Grand Canyon.
The cost of entering the park seems to be flat all year round, but some places may be closed to tourists for their safety. Melting snow may sometimes turn into ice somewhere on hiking trails and you may slip and fall all the way to the rushing Colorado River.
Like what they always say: “Do not underestimate the Grand Canyon.”
It is quite a sight to see the forest in a blanket of white while some trees begin to sprout new leaves.
The thing about winter in the Grand Canyon is that not all wildlife will be around, as some are still hiding from the snow. There will only be a few deer munching on cold grass. There are a lot of ravens, though.
Some may find that the rocks and craters of the Grand Canyon to be repetitive, so for those who feel that one part of the canyon says it all, you can just park on one of the designated view spots, and walk around the foot trail. The cold air is refreshing, while the sun just shines ever presently on the rocks, and shadows will play around depending on the time of the day.
If you get tired from walking, all you do is look to the Grand Canyon, and marvel at a million year old creation. The marvel about the Grand Canyon is that these have been the home of the Native Americans even before the settlers have come in.
Grand Canyon is pet friendly, too. Just clean up after your pets. Oh and look out for them, too. Ravens seem to look at puppies as great sources of fat after a cold winter spell.
For humans who need a warm meal, the cafeterias scattered around the Grand Canyon will give some great food. Chili Dogs with Onion Rings paired with a locally crafted Grand Canyon Sunset Amber Ale is highly recommended. If the beer is not col enough, maybe you can just open the window of the cafeteria and stick it into the snow for a few minutes. This is one advantage of visiting the Grand Canyon during winter.
The Grand Canyon at any time of the year will always be majestic to look at, but a winter visit lends a refreshing perspective on the contrasting colors that complement the weather as you go around the rim and down into some of its valleys. And you may love the lower tourist volume, too!
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