Rise for an early morning before breakfast to witness a spectacular Grand Canyon sunrise. We’ll ride the park’s shuttle to a viewpoint that will allow for the best view. Drive to Peach Springs area is approximately 130 miles; approximately 3 - 3.5 hours. Caverns exploration on paved walkways with some handrails, accessible by elevator, 1 hour in length.
After returning to the lodge restaurant from our early morning Grand Canyon sunrise excursion, we’ll use meal vouchers for a breakfast buffet that features choices including an egg dish, breakfast meats, pancakes, French toast, oatmeal, and fresh fruit, plus juice, milk, coffee, tea, water.
Rising early in the morning, before breakfast we’ll take our vans to witness a spectacular Grand Canyon sunrise viewpoint. We’ll check out of the hotel and continue our Grand Canyon learning adventure with time for a walk along the canyon’s rim with our Group Leader as they discuss geology as well as natural and human history. Weather permitting, we’ll also take a short elective hike down into the Grand Canyon along the famous Bright Angel Trail with our Group Leader. For those who do not wish to hike, enjoy some time to explore independently. The National Park Service includes a free shuttle along the West Rim Drive to Hermit's Rest with access to numerous scenic viewpoints (Powell, Hopi, Mohave, and Maricopa points to name a few) with sweeping views of the canyon and the Colorado River. You might also like to go for a rim walk, hike further into the Canyon, attend an NPS ranger program, or just find a quiet spot to contemplate and gaze out at the Grand Canyon, taking in all of its grandeur.
This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like from a variety of eateries on the South Rim and the historic El Tovar hotel. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.
After rendezvousing at a predetermined time and place, we’ll board the vans and transfer from Grand Canyon National Park to our accommodation along a historic stretch of the famous Route 66. En route, we’ll keep a look out for Burma Shave signs, enjoy wide open views, and drive through a classic site of Route 66 nostalgia – Seligman – with its focus on American road touring in the 1950s. Seligman is the town which Radiator Springs, from the Pixar movie “Cars,” was based on. In late afternoon, we will arrive at our accommodation and have access to the more remote and wild western end of the Grand Canyon. Following check-in and before dinner, for those that wish, you will have the opportunity to explore -- on a paved trail -- Grand Canyon Caverns. Our cave expert will take us through various parts of the largest dry caverns in the United States, 200-300 feet below the surface.
At the hotel restaurant, we’ll enjoy a buffet dinner featuring a salad bar and home-cooked entrees. Coffee, iced tea, water included; other beverages available for purchase.
In the hotel meeting room, we will hear a presentation given by a local expert about the natural and biological environment of Arizona. Exact topics are dependent on availability of presenters who travel long distances to reach the hotel.