Personal: Spring Break in Northern Arizona

It’s been a long time since we’ve gone on a real road trip. I will admit that I was a little skeptical when we loaded all our stuff (including our two children) in the Volvo for what was going to amount to hours and hours of driving over several days. On the itinerary, the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, the Petrified Forrest, then down to visit with family in Phoenix.

So we loaded up with plenty of snacks, video games, and the DVD player. But you know what, most of the time we spent talking and enjoying the scenery. We didn’t even watch one single movie. Now that’s saying something.

We met Tim’s sister and her family at the Grand Canyon (about 13 hours away from our house). After spending the day together, Megan headed back to Phoenix with her Aunt, Uncle and cousin Chloe. Tim and I stayed to explore and continue our road trip with Mitchell and his 8 year old cousin, Cory.

It was nice not to worry about the girls at the Grand Canyon. It’s an amazing and dangerous place. All I can say is that when you are there, it just doesn’t seem “real”. And it is so breathtaking. My pictures do not do it justice in any way shape or form.

What I really wanted was to take some sunrise pictures of the canyon, but when the weather report at the check in desk showed 17 degrees for an overnight low, this California girl opted to photograph the sunset instead!

the Grand Canyon, Northern Arizona landscape, Teresa K photography

the Grand Canyon, Northern Arizona landscape, Teresa K photography

the Grand Canyon, Northern Arizona landscape, Teresa K photography

The boys loved the Grand Canyon and there were plenty of places away from the edge for them to play and run around together.

the Grand Canyon, Northern Arizona landscape, Teresa K photography

The next morning we got up and headed for Monument Valley. We stayed at the View hotel on the reservation. If you are going to go to Monument Valley, this is the place to stay! The views are, well you can just see for yourself…

Monument Valley, Utah, Arizona, Red Rock, Teresa K photography

We drove around the park exploring and rock hunting! Tim and Mitchell have been watching Meteorite Men on the science channel, and were totally into it. Tim even brought along some magnets to test their finds!

Monument Valley, Utah, Arizona, Red Rock, Teresa K photography

Monument Valley, Utah, Arizona, Red Rock, Teresa K photography

It was a new moon that night…how’s that for good timing? I woke up several times throughout the night just to go outside and see the valley floor all lit up from the glow of the moon. It was AMAZING.

Monument Valley, Utah, Arizona, Full Moon, Red Rock, Teresa K photography

Our hotel was so conveniently located that I got sunrise AND sunset pictures (it was much warmer at Monument Valley than the Grand Canyon). I set my tripod up and when I got cold, I just ducked back into our room!

Our Spring Break Vacation to Northern Arizona

We spent the morning hunting for more rocks and of course I was taking pictures (surprise). Mitchell had so much fun with his cousin. And Tim was soooooo in his element.

Monument Valley, Utah, Arizona, Red Rock, Teresa K photography

Monument Valley, Utah, Arizona, Red Rock, Teresa K photography

Monument Valley, Utah, Arizona, Red Rock, Teresa K photography

I couldn’t resist this shot. It’s kind of manly of me to take a picture of my car, huh?

Monument Valley, Utah, Arizona, Red Rock, Teresa K photography, My Volvo XC90

We plotted our return to Phoenix through the Navajo reservation. When we saw that the Petrified Forrest was on the way, we had to stop!

Petrified Forrest, Painted Desert, National Park, Teresa K photography

Petrified Wood, Petrified Forrest, Painted Desert, National Park, Teresa K photography

The desert was in full bloom with beautiful yellow wildflowers everywhere.

Desert Blooms, Arizona and California desert along Highway 10, Teresa K photography

Even the grapevine was loaded with color!

Wildflowers in bloom, the grapevine, California, Teresa K photography, California Landscape photography

To see more of my landscape images from Northern Arizona, check out the slideshow.

9 thoughts on “Personal: Spring Break in Northern Arizona

  1. Unfricken real how gorgeous that place is. I've always wanted to go, but sadly enough, I'm much more well traveled outside the U.S. than I am within my own country 🙁 Traveling in the U.S. is just more expensive! But your pictures make me more determined than ever to at least make it out to the Grand Canyon.

  2. I sooooo want to go the Grand Canyon. Especially after seeing your post. It looks breathtaking. The image of the moon and the 'glow' is beautiful, as are the ones of your boys. Especially the one of them standing next to a tall rock formation…that one should be blown up BIG and shown off on a prominent wall.

  3. Okay – these are amazing! I LOVE the moon shot – really makes me want to make it out to Monument Valley.

    Beautiful flower shots too 🙂

  4. Wow, those are beautiful. I love the pictures of the Grand Canyon especially, so many amazing colors… now I want to go on a road trip!

  5. I have been to the Grand Canyon and Monument Valley more than once but you have really captured the beauty that can be enjoyed long after you have left.

    You are so talented. Thanks for the pictures.

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