This post must begin with a short story from my childhood. When I was 12 years old my father and mother took me and my brother (10 years old at the time) to the Grand Canyon. Not only did we visit, we backpacked down into the canyon (about a one mile drop) across (about 10 miles) and back up the other side. Of all the memories of my childhood, this one is the greatest and most profound to me. As a child I remember the beauty, the grandeur, the immensity of the great Grand Canyon. It impacted me greatly and as a result I recognize how it has effected me now even in my adult years. The Grand Canyon is my first memory of backpacking, an activity that is among my most treasured to this day. I have even begun the valued legacy of taking my children backpacking and teaching them skills to live in the outdoors. And though backpacking has a special place in my heart, it is not the most profound impact I had on that adventure as a child so many years ago.
When I was hiking in the Grand Canyon as a child, the magical colorful tapestry cast it’s spell on me and I was given a “vision” that I would carry with me for the rest of my life. Strange as it may sound, I remember the Grand Canyon as the first time I “knew in my heart” that I was going to be an entrepreneur. Though I may not have been able to put it into words at the time, I did “receive” my first business idea in the high walled cliffs of that Great Canyon. As a 12 year old boy, I envisioned myself selling candy bars in a make-shift vendor kiosk outside our local grocery store, putting the competition out of business by underselling them by 5 cents per candy bar. As a child this idea was brilliant, and, though I did not follow through with this original idea, the vision to start my own business has followed me my entire life. Often times when people ask me how or why I started my own business, I tell them this story.
So, as I have seen this childhood story inspire me throughout my life and prove itself to bear fruit, I was filled with greatest anticipation upon our arrival to the Grand Canyon. The Canyon will forever hold a special place in my heart. Like so many other places, words are inadequate to describe its wonder. In an attempt to capture the awe and beauty of this place, we took many more pictures than this blog post could hold. Of these pictures I also hand sketched a pictured of what I saw. Please enjoy these pictures, that can in no way actually give you the experience we had on our visit.
A few noteworthy things to include in this blog:
At the east end of the park is a tower built in the 1930’s. It was filled with native art and was in a beautiful lookout location.
We learned that scorpions glow in the dark under black light. We found a tiny scorpion (about the size of a quarter) and, using Asher’s secret ink pen complete with a tiny black light, took a picture of the glowing creature at night. Yes, the picture above is a real picture taken with my camera. Weird, huh?!
The kids became official Jr. Rangers of the Grand Canyon.
And, of course, lots of family pictures by the rim.
Back at our camp, Caleb and Lydia created “Bug City” complete with a bug lounge, restaurant, and cabins.
Asher and Eva had camping plans of their own.
It maybe be many years before we will ever know if the Grand Canyon effected our children the same way it effected me. One thing that is for sure, it is a beautiful place to work on school and learn about creation,
a place we will always remember.