The desert southwest, particularly Utah and northern Arizona, has the largest concentration of slot canyons in the world. As the name implies, these canyons are typically narrow and can be very deep. Slot canyons in this region are predominantly found in the red sandstone rock. They are formed over time by water rushing through the rock, wearing away the cemented sand grains that compose the bedrock.
Slot canyons are a popular tourist attraction, and some of the best known are Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon near Page, Arizona. These canyons, as well as most others in the area, are located on the Navajo Nation reservation and are only accessible to the public by guided tours. Some incredible photographic images have been created in slot canyons, so our itinerary included a visit to one of these amazing places today. However, our plan was not to visit one of the more popular (read: overcrowded) canyons. Instead, through lots of research and planning, mostly by Bob (thanks Bob!), we decided to take a tour of the much less crowded and more difficult to access, Canyon X.
Canyon X did not disappoint! Whereas most other canyons are crowded with people from numerous tours, Canyon X was quite different. While on the way to the canyon entrance, someone asked our guide (Charly) how many people would be in the canyon. Charly looked back into our vehicle and promptly stated "six". So, we had the canyon to ourselves for the entire day. In fact, ours was the only tour for the day into the canyon since they only take one in per day. What an awesome experience and we made lots of nice images. Check some out below, and don't forget to click on them to see them larger.
What a great day with perfect weather, but the fun was only beginning. We went into Upper Antelope Canyon tonight for some nighttime landscape/star/lightpainting photography. That story and the images will have to wait until tomorrow... More to come!