Once we reached Jacob Lake we felt like we were on the home stretch. The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is only 10 miles, as the crow flies, from the South Rim. But, right away we felt the difference. One difference is the altitude. It is higher! It sits an the Kaibab Plateau between 8,000 and 9,000 feet above sea level. This area is covered with conifers and aspen. The pace is different as well with fewer people, easy parking and access to points of interest. It was well worth the long drive through gorgeous terrain!
We went for the colors of fall, specifically the aspen yellow and orange. But, there are so many interesting trees that the aspen's gold slowly lost out as being the most interesting.
We took the tourist route, starting at Point Imperial (image below) and the driving to Cape Royal for our sunset shot. It was a good choice. As you will notice, with four photographers, there were different interpretations of any scene.
The following morning we returned to the North Rim, dropped Ann off for her hike down the Kaibab Trail and then went to the Visitor Center and the Grand Canyon Lodge. There is a relatively easy trail along the rim which we hiked for a short time. The weather was perfect!
This last set of images were all taken by Ann. She is the hiker! She does not care for taking photographs but we talked her into taking her seldom used point and shoot on her hike down Kaibab Trail. She hiked 5 miles, roundtrip. We dropped her off and picked her up 2.5 hours later. Aside from hiking, Ann loves meeting folks along the trail. There are two prominent features to be noted. One is the bridge where Rim to Rim hikers cross the river. The second is the tunnel where the hiker's path cuts through the mountain. I am proud to tell you that Ann has made 12 Rim to Rim hikes! She is a trooper in taking photos for us . . . stopping, getting the camera out, etc. all takes time from her hiking. We appreciate the view she gives us.
We met up with Ann, had a picnic lunch along the rim and headed home. What a weekend!! If you have not been to the North Rim . . . put that on your list for next year. The Rim is set to close with the first serious winter storm. Lodges and campgrounds plan on closing about the middle of October.