We were fortunate to be staying at the Grand Canyon on the night of August 11-12, when the Perseids Meteor Shower took place over North America. Had we been at home, we would have lamented the fact that we’d have to drive a long distance to get away from the city lights to hope to have a chance to see the meteors. However, when Andrew saw a feature while checking his email yesterday, he stopped by the front desk to see if the park was planning anything special and yes! – we were going to be up at 2 a.m. checking out this celestial fireworks display.
The Olympics have come along at a bad time for us, because we stayed up until 11:30 p.m. (local time) to see if the USA men’s gymnastic team would hang on to the silver team medal. (They didn’t, losing in the last event and dropping to the bronze.) So we got about 2 hours of sleep before the alarm went off, but everyone pulled themselves out of bed, put on some warm clothing, and then we hopped in the car for a short drive to a Grand Canyon overlook…with about 100 of our newfound star-gazing friends from all around the world.
Even if there wasn’t going to be a meteor shower, just having the chance to see a beautiful night sky on a cloudless night over the Grand Canyon was a real treat. But for about 45 minutes we were treated to the commentary of a friendly park ranger, some Beethoven (courtesy of the ranger’s boom box), and dozens of meteors whizzing across the night sky.
It was a night to remember and something that we’ll take away as one of the special moments from our western trip.
We leave the Grand Canyon in about an hour to travel through Monument Valley.
More to come…