There are some places on the planet that are known for their sunrises and sunsets. I personally, celebrate sunsets as often as possible and sunrises when on the very rare occasion I am up to see them. So when I seen I would be here for sunset and sunrise I knew I had to celebrate this daily ritual.
I had already seen the sunset at the Desert Botanical Gardens so I was very anxious to see it here as well. After Pam and I had our tour with the delightful Tony, we had the rest of the day to enjoy the canyon. We had plenty of time to take in all the grandeur of this place. As the daytime was soon ending and evening would take its shift, this place takes on an ethereal beauty. The scrumptious reds, gold, and rusts of the rocks must now compete with the reds, pinks, and yellows of the nighttime skies. The clouds here change too. Several looked like UFO’s to me!!!
You really have to go to different vantage points to see the varying shades of the evening. There is just something special about looking out over the massive land with the brilliant colors of the sky changing into its nighttime shine. Unlike Phoenix, there are no twinkling lights in the distance from surrounding cities. And that is just the way I like it.
As I have mentioned before I am not a fan of mornings. But when I received my itinerary and it listed the option of being up at ready to hike to the lookout point for sunrise at the Grand Canyon, there was no way I was not going to see this.
Pam and I both were up for this option. We drug our sleepy heads out of bed and headed out to the bus stop to catch the bus out to Mather Point. The minute we got to our stop and headed towards the point, I knew why they suggested a heavy jacket here. I had to have an extra piece of luggage to fit my hubby’s big stadium jacket in it. Up until this point I was thinking I had wasted my money. It was freezing. So make sure you bring a heavy jacket if you’re planning to enjoy this spectacle of nature.
We make our way to Mather Point where a crowd has already arrived before us. We walk around trying to find the best vantage point in which to view this site so many people had come to see. Pam, Jodine, and others from our group gather around the railings. Myself and others perch up on a boulder. We wait for the special moment when the sun would rise up over the horizon to greet us.
As the first rays break the excitement begins to build as people prepare for the beginning of our day. As the sun starts to pop its head over the horizon, you start to hear gasps and "here it come". Once that glowing ball is up, a collection cheer arises from the crowd as we greet this morning as so many do every morning. As I looked around I see people holding each other, smiles a mile wide, and tears being wiped from what we just witnessed. It was a collective experience that we all shared that will last a lifetime.
As the sun started climbing up I had to once again remind myself to breath. As I waiting to say hello to the sun I just kept thinking how lucky I was to be here to experience this event. As the sun creeps up I have a hard time taking pictures for the tears that start streaming down from my face. While it may seem trivial since this natural event occurs everyday. To be here at this place and to see something some hauntingly beautiful is a treat. And it is something every person should have the privilege of doing so at least once in their lifetime.
Should you be here during Easter, they do offer 2 options for sunrise services. The most spectacular of these is held in the park. Traditionally the services have been held at Mather Point but this year it was held at Yavapai Point. The Shrine of the Ages also holds services. Both services are non-denominational. Check the park’s website for more information. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the Lord’s resurrection.