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Horseshoe Bend and Lake Powell Adventures

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Already did Antelope Canyon? An aerial tour of Lake Powell and Rainbow bridge is a great way to see the rest of the area. Like the Grand Canyon, the lake is simply too large to see from a single viewpoint. The best way to grasp the scale and beauty of the area is to be above it.

In addition to Lake Powell, you will fly over Rainbow Bridge. This is the largest natural bridge in the world, and a United States national monument. It takes about 2 hour to get there by boat, and then you have to hike about a mile with how low the water is.

Highly recommended tour. It’s a great way to spend 25-30 minutes.

23 Responses

  1. Hi Alley: I have another question. When we leave the Grand Canyon we will be heading for Phoenix.We will stay there overnight before flying home. What scenic route should we take? Thanks once more for your valuable insights. They have greatly helped us in our decisions. Christine

    1. Hi again, Christine!
      One of the nice things about the most direct route from Grand Canyon South Rim to Phoenix is that it is quite scenic to begin with! A couple of modifications you might consider to make the most out of the trip:
      Travel from Grand Canyon South Rim to Valle, AZ (~30 miles); in Valle, instead of going straight down AZ64, veer left onto US180. This will take you through the beautiful San Francisco Peaks area. I don’t recall if you planned to hit Sedona on your trip, just South of Flagstaff, you have the option to get on US89A through Oak Creed Canyon and Sedona. You can then get back onto I-17 easily enough by taking AZ179 through the Village of Oak Creek. If you wish, you might also stop at Montezuma’s Castle National Monument or Arcosanti. One drawback to this route – if you can call it that – is that once you get a glimpse of Sedona, you’ll wish you had more time there. I can pretty much guarantee you’ll be planning a return visit in pretty short order!

      Another option, if you haven’t been gone to Page, AZ, or Monument Valley before arriving at the Grand Canyon, would be to take the East Rim/Desert View Drive to Cameron, AZ, then turn South on US89 towards Flagstaff. If desired, take the scenic loop drive through Wupatki and Sunset Crater National Monuments just North of Flagstaff. Heading South on I-17, the Sunset Point rest area near Black Canyon City offers beautiful views of the mountains to the West.

      Have a safe trip!
      Alley πŸ™‚

  2. Hi, I am staying at Lake Powell resort in June. I would like to take a Glen Canyon float trip and a trip to Antelope canyon. I have an afternoon and the next morning to do this unless I stay another night. Is there a boat trip on Lake Powell to see Antelope Canyon?

    1. Hi Christine, and thank you for your inquiry.
      The Glen Canyon Float Trip is a 4.5 hour trip that is best taken in the morning for more comfortable temperatures in the canyon. The morning departure takes place at 7:00 AM and requires a 6:00 AM check-in at Wilderness River Adventures in Page, AZ. Allow ~20 minutes to drive from Lake Powell Resort into town. If you rise early that morning, hit Horseshoe Bend before heading over to Wilderness so you can also take advantage of cooler temperatures and fewer people at this location.
      There absolutely is a Lake Powell boat tour that goes to the waterside of Antelope Canyon, and as of just recently, you are now able to book both the walking (land-side) tours of Antelope Canyon with the boat tour as a “bundle.” It’s a lot easier process than booking the two tours separately, trust me!
      All that said, I would still recommend staying a second night at Lake Powell Resort regardless. Even though the Glen Canyon Float Trip would wrap up at around noon, prolonged exposure to the sun tends to zap the energy out of you pretty quick. I can pretty much guarantee that afterwards, you’ll be in no mood for a long drive to your next destination. Relaxing with a cocktail will probably be more to your liking.
      Hope that helps. Good luck and safe travels,
      Alley πŸ™‚

      1. Hi Alley: It’s Christine again. We will be coming into Lake Powell from Bryce. Would you tell us the best route to use and what stops you would suggest making along the way. Thanks to you we will make it to Antelope canyon and will go on the float tour. Thanks again for your valuable input.

        1. Hi Christine!
          The best route to take from Bryce Canyon to Page, AZ, is to take UT-12 West from Bryce Canyon to US89, then turn South toward Kanab, UT. The Best Western Thunderbird Lodge at Mt. Carmel Junction might make a good stop for breakfast/brunch if you’re hungry at that point. You might also enjoy a stroll through historic Kanab, UT, to browse for souvenirs or to pick up some snacks.
          At mile marker 19 of US89 between Kanab, UT, and Page, AZ, enjoy an easy but rewarding hike to the Paria Rimrocks/Toadstool Hoodoos. In Big Water, UT, you’ll find a visitor center with some award-winning displays of dinosaur fossils excavated locally.
          Although the drive is given on Google Maps as 2.5 hours, don’t be surprised if it takes you a bit longer. Hope you can take the time to enjoy it!
          Have fun,
          Alley πŸ™‚

    2. Hi Alley: Thank you for the insight. I have another question. We will visit Zion, Bryce, Lake Powell and the Grand Canyon in a week’s time. We have been entertaining the idea of a fixed plane ride. What option would give us the best overlook, from Page, Grand Canyon or other? Thank you, Christine

      1. Hi again, Christine!
        Holy moly, that’s a hard one. Flying over both the Grand Canyon and Lake Powell is incredible, and the good news is, you won’t go wrong, whichever place you choose for your scenic flight!
        In my opinion, flying over the Grand Canyon is actually better by helicopter instead of fixed-wing airplane. While the helicopters are technically forbidden from flying below the rim, they still get you at an altitude even with the North Rim. There are instances where you almost feel like you could open a window and reach out and touch the canyon walls. Fixed wing airplanes are required to fly 1,000′ higher than helicopters over the Grand Canyon airspace, so that perspective is more of a “bird’s eye” view that will better illustrate how the Grand Canyon relates to the surrounding landscape if that makes sense.
        Fixed wing airplanes are actually allowed to fly fairly low over Lake Powell, which is why many people report the experience as feeling more intimate than airplane flights over the South Rim. If you opt to fly over Lake Powell, I recommend the flight that goes over Rainbow Bridge.
        Whatever you do, try to schedule your flight for the morning hours for optimal light and less wind.
        Hope that helps. I know it’s a tough choice!
        Alley πŸ™‚

  3. From LV, we are driving and will stay in Page for the night. Will first week of January be also a good time to see the Canyons?

    1. Dear Mrose,
      Any time of year is a wonderful time to see the canyons! January will feature cooler temperatures, and the possibility of snow, but most days are sunny, and having fewer people to contend with than during the summer months is always a plus. Even though crowds are typically smaller during the winter months, do book your Antelope Canyon tour well in advance of your arrival.
      Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and best wishes for safe travels!
      Alley πŸ™‚

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