John & Anne Wiley

2014/05/25

Second Invitation

So the second of our “Three Invitations” was when we looked up the Paria River that branches off the Colorado River at the top of Marble Canyon. We almost took a few minutes to fly up there for a look, but wanted to join Zubair and family at Page because they’d flown on ahead. Thus it was that on the same day as our trance-forming walk down into Lower Antelope Canyon, Tripp lifted us up over it and after a brief detour over Navajo Canyon we made the short hop West. In a few minutes we had this view back down the Paria River toward the distant top of Marble Canyon.

8181 Paria River Canyon

8181 Paria River Canyon

In places the river has carved a very deep and narrow channel through the rock, similar to yet different from the other carved gorges we’d seen.

8218 Deep & Narrow

8218 Deep & Narrow

The zig-zag in this spot really caught my eye. I wonder if many hikers explore the bottom there, presumably equipped with weather radios to listen for warnings and climbing gear to make a hasty exit in event of any rain in the region. In most places the channel was much wider, but in medium sized areas there are rock islands and complex shapes.

8242 Complex Carving

8242 Complex Carving

In this region is an area called Vermillion Cliffs where I thought we might spot The Wave but we didn’t know exactly where to look and probably flew too far North along the river to see it. In most places it was too dark at the bottom of the river to see much in the medium or narrow channels, but I did manage to get this view as we headed back to accept our third “invitation” (pix to share in my next post).

8257 Down & In

8257 Down & In

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