Keane and I decided to drive to Page, Arizona to hit up some slot canyons while visiting his grandparents in Phoenix. As we entered through Navajo country, we noticed a hitchhiker making his way up the 89 freeway, trudging his way through the 100 degree heat. We decide to give him a lift and after he gets in, we learn that his car had broken down the previous month, and he’d been hitchhiking the past couple of weeks as a means to getting around (in this case, to check on a friend, 40 miles away from his Chapter House). His entire family- even his sisters- have taken up welding, and they often overlook the potential safety hazards (especially for eyes) to make ends meet. He’s a soft-spoken and optimistic guy in his mid 30s, and my heart gets a little heavy when he starts talking about his daughter, how she’s hoping to apply to college in a couple of years. We drop him off at Lechee, and reminded of the socioeconomic reality that many people across the country face, we trudge on.
Needless to say, we eventually get to Antelope, and the grandeur is all sorts of cray:
Since the guided tour ended with some sunlight left (you’re not allowed in without being part of one), we decided to explore another, more isolated canyon by ourselves. Not a soul, and just as lovely: