In May, 2005, I traveled to America's Colorado Plateau region to tour and photograph the amazing landscapes of several national parks. I joined a tour group organized by Tauck World Discovery for this one-week journey. Tauck assigned a very knowledgeable tour director, a tour bus, and a wonderful driver. Tauck also included most meals and all lodging. The journey was fantastic in every way and I credit Tauck for making it an unforgettable event. I selected the best photographs and published them in the following pages. I encourage you to enjoy them.
After landing in Phoenix, Arizona, I was quickly picked up by a chauffeur with a black Lincoln Towncar that took me to Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Resort, where I met the tour group. I started my tour with a one-night stay at the resort, which was very comfortable and beautiful. My room even had a balcony.
Our group stopped at Sedona, Arizona, for lunch while traveling to Grand Canyon. Natural red rock formations are the major attractions at Sedona. I did not get a chance to tour the city.
I visited the Grand Canyon National Park's south rim in Arizona and stayed one night at the Kachina Lodge inside the park. Before sunrise the next morning, I hiked to Yavapai Observation Station to photograph the canyon as sunlight slowly illuminated the area below the rim. By late morning, the whole canyon was bathed in sunlight.
The views of the Grand Canyon from both the Lookout Studio and the Kolb Studio are amazing. Both historic buildings are perched on the edge of the canyon rim. From their windows, I looked straight down into the canyon.
A small plane took me and a small group of travelers to the sky over Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, in both Arizona and Utah. From the air, I photographed the unique landscapes of the Glen Canyon and Lake Powell.
The float trip on the Colorado River began at the bottom of Glen Canyon Dam near Page, Arizona. It was a calm water trip. The small boat took about eight people and was powered by an outboard motor. I floated south; through the Glen Canyon. The trip ended at Lees Ferry, Arizona.
Upper Antelope Canyon is located in the Navajo Indian Reservation in northern Arizona near the city of Page. I walked into this very narrow canyon with a small group of travelers and a local guide. My out stretched arms could touch both sides of the canyon walls. There was no rain during that day, so I was safe. Any mount of rain can cause a flash flood in the canyon and drown everyone. Small amount of sun light penetrated this narrow canyon, so the condition was very dark at the bottom of the canyon. The following photographs show the orange color of the rock formation.
Bryce Canyon National Park is located in southern Utah. It is my favorite stop on this tour. The unique rock formations, called hoodoos, are the primary attractions. They are amazingly beautiful. I stayed one night inside the park in a one-room cabin made from logs and stones. I took a guided hike below the canyon rim to Queen's Garden. That was how I photographed the hoodoos from below the canyon rim. I also photographed the canyon in a variety of lighting conditions from sunrise to late morning.
Zion National Park is located in southern Utah. I stayed one night in the Zion Lodge, which was inside the park. Avid hikers are attracted to this park due to its numerous trails that ascend the canyon walls. I hiked the Weeping Rock trial and ended up at a dead-end carved into the canyon wall with dripping springs. I strolled the Riverside Walk that followed the Virgin River along the bottom of the canyon. I also hiked to the Lower Emerald Pool.