Grand Canyon, Twice: West Rim and South Rim

Grand Canyon, Twice: West Rim and South Rim

Round 1: Bus tour to the West Rim Imagine that you wake up at an ungodly hour before dawn so that you can get picked up by your tour bus and get on the road for several hours before arriving at this fabled world landmark for a once-in-a-lifetime view…then you arrive and you see this: That’s right – almost zero visibility. The helicopter ride I was booked in for is cancelled. It looks like this is going to be it. It’s cold and it’s still a few hours until we head back on the bus, and there’s nothing to do but wait. Then, in the last hour or two, the sun breaks through. And you see this: Well, that was pretty much my first experience of the Grand Canyon West Rim. Despite the undeniable beauty that eventually revealed itself, the whole thing had felt muted because of the slow reveal rather than shock-and-awe from the start, plus I had heard that the South Rim was much more beautiful whereas the West Rim was more touristy, probably because of its greater proximity to Las Vegas, a popular destination from which to take a Grand Canyon tour. As such, I didn’t feel like I was done here – I resolved to return. (By the way, this may sound strange, but the bus journey was possibly a better experience than the views. The bus driver, Thomas, was hilarious – he entertained us every step of the way by joking around, singing bits of what he was saying, and just generally enjoying doing his job with great panache. I love meeting these people...