My last Thanksgiving was at LA. Given that I am not in the states now and don't get to visit often, I was hoping to check some places off my list. Antelope Canyon is definitely top of mind. Although not a niche idea and the crowd might destroy the photo background, it's a place one needs to see at least once in life. So there we went, a full-week road trip into Arizona. 

 Headed off from LA, covered by the dusk

Headed off from LA, covered by the dusk

 Layover at Bellagio, Vegas. The overlapping lights

Layover at Bellagio, Vegas. The overlapping lights

 Hit the road at dawn. See you again soon, Vegas!

Hit the road at dawn. See you again soon, Vegas!


I chose to visit Antelope Canyon X, instead of the most popular Upper Antelope Canyon. From my research, the view is similar but with way fewer people. So I chose the road less traveled to differentiate myself. *wink wink* (The actual reason was that by the time I came up with this road trip idea, the Upper Antelope was fully booked. lol. I will for sure visit Upper Antelope next time!)

Similar to all geologic sites at Arizona, you need to enter with a tour. (I found this one specializing in Canyon X.) We met the tour at an open space along the highway. When everyone is ready, we hopped on an off-road vehicle and headed to the miraculous cracks.

 A rocky road down the Antelope Canyon

A rocky road down the Antelope Canyon

 At the entrance

At the entrance

I have seen the image from photo a thousand times , but the view still stroke me by awe the moment I stepped into the crack. Millions of years were shaped into the elegant curves that embrace the light and shadow. In contrast to the hourglass that expresses the diminishment of second, minute and hour, the waving layers of sand rock solidify the day, month and year. Sand is such a poetic object that shows us the invisibles and eternity.

Just like Williams Black once wrote: "To see a world in a grain of sand."

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Antelope Canyon X is deeper and narrower than Upper Antelope Canyon. Some parts of the path only get sunlight at noon and remain completely dark for the rest of day. Light and shadow make the color contrast here so intense. The world is flaming outside yet I am looking up from the dim glow. 

Advice if you're planning to take photos at Antelope Canyon X: come at noon and bring a tripod. If lucky, you can witness the Ghost. I can imagine it a supremely sublime experiment with the nature, and I hope to have the fortune to see it some day in the future. #LifeGoal

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Some of the composition reminds me of the painting from Georgia O'keeffe. If you know her metaphor with flower and crevice, we are actually in the body of Mother Nature. Such a random association with the mind of art. lol.

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Beyond the grand surroundings, I was also fascinated by the close-ups, such as sands water-falling down cave, and the different forms of calcification that interpreted the passing of time.

 The beautiful layers and patterns of the rocks

The beautiful layers and patterns of the rocks

Unquestionably, this is one of the most stunning places in the world. I can sit here all day to ponder, to get awed, and to be part of the time passing by. I saw no trace left behind over the day, yet all I could see were the vestiges of time.

Me being there, as a little grain of sand in the river of history.

 Sand water-falling, fluid over solid

Sand water-falling, fluid over solid

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