Antelope Canyon, a tributary of Lake Powell (Colorado River) is a slot canyon situated outside Page, AZ. The canyon is divided into the Lower and Upper Canyons. A road runs through the wash between the two. The Lower Canyon is accessed via steel ladders bolted into the canyon walls. These were installed following a disaster in 1997 when a flash flood scoured out the Lower canyon drowning 11 European and American tourists; the guide was the only survivor. The walls of the canyon have been eroded over millennia by these sporadic flash floods to yield smoothened surfaces of Navajo sandstone that catch, reflect and re-reflect the restricted amount of light that enters from above. The upper Canyon, by contrast, is entered at the level of the slot canyon floor, after a slithering 2-mile trip along the sandy wash in a 4-WD vehicle. The Upper Canyon receives much less light than the Lower Canyon, but comes into its own about midday. At this time, shafts of light shine to the canyon floor, illuminating the darkness. At prime viewing times it gets as crowded as Times Square on New Year's Eve; crowd control is non-existent as multiple tour companies lead tours here (unlike at the Lower Canyon where only one company controls access).
Keywords:Antelope Canyon, Arizona, Lake Powell, Page, slot canyon