you told me it was haunted. You could almost feel the history when you stepped inside. I instantly fell in love. And I was simultaneously bummed we weren't staying in this lodge. I would LOVE to throw a party here - something themed: Halloween, Gatsby, 20's gangster, along those lines.
But eating there would have to suffice.
The view was hard to capture - since it was kind of dark inside and super bright out. But just past that first line of trees, the ground drops about 1,000 feet. Maybe more.
The food at the El Tovar was perfect. Probably the best we ate the entire trip (I may recant that later, but I cannot think, at this moment, of a better restaurant). I ordered a mushroom, spinach and goat cheese omelet. Perfection. My mother-in-law ordered the homemade cinnamon roll... look at it! It's HUGE! She said it was delicious (and healthy since there is half a strawberry on top *wink*).
I should warn you though - the wait for food can sometimes be a bit. The kitchen definitely cooks to order and if you catch the rush at the wrong time, expect to wait.
Bellies are full. Check out this view!
Reagan and I left the restaurant first. We were drawn to the canyon.
With an unfiltered view like this (immediately outside of the El Tovar restaurant), how could you not fall in love?
Desert View Watchtower
Riley was not thrilled about having to get back on the bus. He calmed down after I explained that we were only driving 45 minutes to see one thing, then coming back. And we had the rest of the afternoon to spend how we wanted... sans tour bus. The idea of freedom was enough to appease him.
The weather was insanely perfect. We could not have requested better skies. The only (slight) bummer was the prescribed burns taking place in the National Park. The fires create a great deal of smoke (duh). And the smoke created a haze in the canyon.
Seriously though, with that as my only complaint, how can I really complain?
Desert View Watchtower is located on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. It opened in 1932, and it was architected by Mary Colter (as were other buildings and locales in the GCNP). For some excellent history and insight into the Watchtower, visitASU's site.
Oddly enough, I didn't take many photos of the Watchtower. I mostly was focused on the incredible views.
I did, however, get shots from inside. The tower was decorated with tribal paintings from a local Hopi man (in the 30s).
Each level of the tower has windows (to which glass has been added). The stairs are a tight squeeze and they are pretty narrow. But they are worth the effort.
Riley did not climb the stairs. As I told you before, he does not like heights or edges. He pretty much hung out in the middle point of the room. He had no interest in climbing the stairs. But he found the faces funny (photo above)... he thought they looked like old emojis.
I was able to get one picture of my 4 outside. Riley agreed to it, only if I held him.
Alright, enough chatter. Please enjoy these photos:
I love these bench pictures. Although I wish Riley was in them. What you can't see is the drop off into the canyon about 4 feet in front of this bench. What you can't see is Riley, safely perched on a large boulder about 25 feet behind us. What you can't hear is him saying "No WAY! I'm NOT going over there." And I'll be honest, it freaked me out a bit too... just don't tell the kids.
Well, that ends our time at the Desert View Watchtower. If you are in the area, be sure to make the trip over to it. You will not be sorry.
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We love to travel. Although our roaming souls often come back to the same places.