Waterholes slot canyon is an excellent non-technical slot canyon located near the tourist town of Page, Arizona. While most of the more well known natural wonders in this area are often crowded in season, Waterholes is blissfully empty of visitors. This is only due to apparent lack of awareness, as Waterholes slot canyon is as good of an experience as any nearby and is easily reached – in fact, thousands of people drive over Waterholes canyon every day oblivious to the beauty lying below them. It does require a Navajo hiking pass and a bit of scrambling to navigate, but nothing any able-bodied people couldn’t do. While not quite as scenic as the famous Antelope Canyon slot, the ability to explore at your own pace without the crowds raises its worth tremendously.
The pictures below are a few from our trip there. After the pictures, you’ll find a link to my detailed description of the hike along with very important tips on how to see it yourself. I have included another link to a list of all the slot canyons I have visited, each of which has its own descriptive article and hi-res pictures.
To read a detailed description of Waterholes slot canyon, plus needful tips, go here.
A list of all the slot canyons I’ve visited with helpful descriptions is here.
“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.” – anonymous
Every New Year, many of us make resolutions. The top choices are always relating to getting healthier in some manner – losing weight or stopping smoking or the like. While getting healthy is certainly a worthy goal, the next highest goal is the one I want to speak on: enjoying life to the fullest. Hellen Keller said “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.” Similarly, Mel Gibson’s character in Braveheart said, “Every man dies, not every man truly lives.” These quotes are good examples of why enjoying life to the fullest is a resolution. We all know that we spend most of our time not really living, but only existing, and we long for something more fulfilling.
Think back over your life and consider what your top ten moments are. Don’t use obligatory answers like when you got married or a child was born. These certainly are important moments in our lives, but we can’t produce a new child every year or a new marriage (I hope!). Have you got the moments in your mind? Is it hard to come up with a worthy list?
Much of our lives are spent working and doing chores and our free time is often spent looking at screens. As if television and computer screens were not enough, we now have smart phones and tablets of all sizes to further occupy our time. Do you have any fond memories of the time spent before the screens? Do they offer a life truly lived?
Spending more time with loved ones and paying attention to the wonders of the world in our immediate vicinity can increase life enjoyment, to be sure. But perhaps a new experience, a new adventure, is a more sure way of adding a fresh, memorable moment to our lives.
If you are a regular traveler, then I encourage you to make sure you do something excellent this year. Avoid the routine and find something that will stick with you. If you are not a regular traveler, then what is keeping you? Money obviously could be, but if you are able, put back something to allow for a new experience. If money is taken care of, then you likely need either motivation or inspiration. The latter should take care of the former.
Let me give you an example. When I find a picture of a place that makes me wistful, I make it a point to figure out where that place is. Sometimes it takes a little digging to get the answer, but
it is out there. Last year, I saw a great picture of mountains reflecting in a lake that I didn’t recognize. After some research, I found out it was the Maroon Bells near Aspen Colorado. Six months later, my wife and I was standing on that lake shore at 5:30 am along with about 100 other photographers to capture the moment. I would have preferred to be more alone, but the quantity of visitors there was testament to the experience. Watching the sun rise and paint the mountains purple showed all too clearly where the Maroon Bells get their name. It was a moment we will never forget. The inspiration of seeing that view provided all the motivation I needed to make it happen.
I encourage you to spend a little time on this website or others like it and find a trip idea that will lead you to a few moments that will take your breath away. It is easier than you probably realize.
Careful Adventures. The two words may seem like contradictory terms. The word careful defines itself – being full of care. Adventure, on the other hand, can conjure up a larger variety of meanings. A dictionary will define it as a bold or risky undertaking, a hazardous action with an uncertain outcome. But an alternate definition is an exciting or very unusual experience. That is the definition I choose to use for purposes of this website. Combining the two, then, gives this definition:
Careful Adventures – Exciting or very unusual experiences performed in a manner full of care so that the real risk is minimal.
I love adventure, but I love my life and limbs even more. Spoken another way, travel variety is the spice of life, but if I lose my life in the process, then the goal of having a remembered experience is lost. For that is the core of travel for me: to acquire memories of varied experiences that I am fond of recollecting.
For me, variety of experience is a key. I like adventurous things, like swimming with manta rays or
squeezing through slot canyons. But I also like a lazy day at a beach where the azure water is so clear that you can easily see the colorful fish nipping at your toes. I enjoy road trips, guided tours, resort stays and cruises, as long as each lead to a memory I treasure.
I still cherish the memory of wading in the warm, wave-less aquamarine waters of Bora Bora juxtaposed with the lush, green volcanic core of the island. I recall the shafts of sunlight piercing the shadows and illuminating the red-orange walls of Upper Antelope Canyon. I can still taste the clear water flowing off of Athabasca glacier in the Canadian Rockies. In my mind’s eye I can still remember the 7’ lemon shark that languorously swam a few feet under me as I helped my 9 year old daughter snorkel for the first time over the elk coral of Buck Island in St. Croix. These and countless other memories are mine, shared only with the loved ones I was fortunate to have with me on each trip or with other travelers who have also been there and done that. I want more of these experiences. My hope and goal with this website is to foster in you the same desire.
I am not rich. I am not young or a physical specimen in any way. Fact is I need to lose 50 lbs (I’m working on it). As my son says, I am not a Point Break kind of guy (he was referring to the movie). But that doesn’t keep me from seeking out adventure – I’m just careful doing it.