Because we’re trying to take things at a slower pace, Tom booked another “long” stay – four whole nights at a campsite in the Kaibab National Forest, called Jacob’s Lake Campground. I highly recommend it.
We got a great site, and Tom picked the spot because 1) it’s on our route north, 2) It was between the Grand Canyon and Lake Powell, and 3) It wasn’t full.
We like camping in National Forests: the rates are cheap ($10 to $12 per night with a Senior Park Pass), and the sites aren’t crowded. This spot was extremely spacious and we lucked out with only one campsite next to us.
Jacob’s Lake is a bend in the road going from Page to Kanab. There is an Inn and store there (across the street from the campground) that is worth stopping at. Like the sign says, they have GREAT cookies!
Six nights a week they have a 7:30 PM presentation by one of the owners. On the first night, we went to “The Gifts of Spider Woman” talk by John Rich Jr and found it fascinating. He is the eldest member of the family that has owned the place since the 1920’s or 30’s. Not only did his talk explain why Navaho rugs cost thousands of dollars – we were wondering – but he also immersed us in the Navaho culture and explained how the weaving is so much more than moving string back and forth through a loom.
John had such an immense empathy for the Native peoples. Really great informative (and lengthy) talk.
The next day we packed a lunch and drove the forty-five miles to the North Rim. There are a lot of hikes there, but mostly we drove to look-out spots and took the short hikes around them. The problem (for me) about hiking at any canyon is – you always start by going down. Which means you always finish by going up. Not my favorite!
We took in the beauty and the vastness of the Grand Canyon’s North Rim, and of course we took pictures, but none of them do it justice. Going there has just got to be on your bucket list.
The next day we took the kayak and drove the ninety miles to Page and Lake Powell. We had looked into doing a rafting trip on the Colorado River, but it was expensive and a lot of time spent shuttling between Lee’s Ferry and Page made it sound less appealing.
We had never seen Lake Powell or the Glen Canyon area, so our first stop was at the Glen Canyon Dam, where we picked up some maps. A young man there suggested we launch from the Antelope Point Marina and beaches. It didn’t look like such a good idea when we got there – we’d have to lug the boat down (and then up) a hill to get to the water. And it was hot!
We ran into a couple climbing up and they told us about a better spot where you could drive right up to the water’s edge: Lone Rock Beaches.
So back in the Jeep we went to drive to the OTHER side of the dam. Just across the border in Utah. There was the Lone Rock Recreational Area and it was pretty incredible. Long beaches with free camping right along the water. On the other side of the parking area were ATV trails. In addition to the RV’s camped there, there were a lot of boats docked at the beach. I don’t know why I don’t have pictures from there!
We just pulled up, inflated the kayak and off we went. The lake is immense, and there is no way we could have paddled to the other side – not with all the boat traffic – so we kept it within the five-mile-an-hour buoys and paddled up and down the shoreline.
We weren’t gone long – but enough to work up an appetite, so we went back to Page for Mexican food. We picked a great restaurant: the Fiesta Mexicana. Tom enjoyed it!
On the 90 minute drive back home (Jacob Lake), we stopped at a few spots like Lee’s Ferry and a place where they had balancing rocks and dwellings build around them.
Tom is always scouting out new places for us !
The following day, we stayed home. Tom cleaned the motorhome and tightened some screws, etc, while I worked on video editing. It was a nice kick-back day.
And now we’re on to our next adventure as we try to find cool camping spots going north through Utah.
Peace & Love, Joy
I recommend Goblin Valley in south central Utah! The north rim is on our bucket list.