Upper Antelope Canyon is on the Navajo Reservation and you cannot visit the canyon unless you take a tour conducted by a tribal-owned company. The Upper refers to elevation, not direction, and Upper Antelope is actually south of Lower Antelope. Upper Antelope Canyon winds for approximately 1/4 mile in length and is called a slot canyon. The walls of the canyon are about 120 feet high and the width varies from 6-15 feet. The Navajo name for the canyon is Tse’ bighanilini, which means “the place where water runs through rocks.” Over millions of years flash floods have shaped the canyon into the wonder that it is today.
There are still occasional floods which fill the canyon with debris and a massive cleanup is required before it’s again open for visitors. The water comes through the canyon about 20 feet deep and travels at 40 mph.
It is one of the most fascinating places we’ve ever been. The rock formation is quite varied and there is a real palette of colors—purples, oranges, pinks, yellows, blue, black, and many more. I took over 100 photos inside the canyon, so perhaps these few will help convey the almost spiritual experience of being there.
If you are ever in northern AZ, do yourself a favor and visit the Upper Antelope Canyon—you won’t regret it.
After leaving the canyon we decided to spend another night in Page. Dinner at Ken’s steakhouse—leftover ribeye for tomorrow’s lunch.