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Archive 2016 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September
  
 
rongwam
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


I am planning on a trip to Antelope Canyon, Page, AZ, at the end of September. A group of friends about 3 people will join me. It would be my first time there, so I any advice and suggestions would be really appreciated. Thanks.

Henry



Aug 15, 2016 at 09:27 PM
Chance2
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


You'll find lots of info about both Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon here and on other forums (Upper you need to book a tour to and then take a 4 wheel drive vehicle to; Lower you just drive up to, choose from one of the on-site tour operators, and walk down into). If your friends aren't into photography, Upper Antelope is probably the place for them. It's very dark in comparison to Lower Antelope, but it's also where you get the cool rays that are so popular (I think there are plenty of other shots to be had, but YMMV).

If possible, I suggest trying out the Upper and Lower Antelope tours to see which is more to your liking, then going back a second time, maybe the next day, to your favorite--ideally without your friends or any distractions.

I know that doesn't sound like much in the way of advice, but both canyons have their pluses and minuses. Upper is darker overall and usually much more crowded. The compositions in Lower Antelope are less obvious, but they're there.

Gotta run.

It's a great place that definitely gets in your blood. Have fun!



Aug 15, 2016 at 10:44 PM
rongwam
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


Thanks Chance2 for the quick tips! I did a quick search on the forum and found some good advices for the Antelope trip. Thanks again.


Aug 15, 2016 at 11:05 PM
Greg Campbell
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


How long will you be in the area?
Are your friends up for a little relatively easy hiking?



Aug 16, 2016 at 03:25 AM
rongwam
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


My friends are also photogs, and we plan on staying there for 2-3 days. However, I just checked the reservations for photographer tour and saw that all the slots are booked, so we might have to reschedule a trip in October. For now, we are looking at the weekend of either Oct 8th or Oct 15th. Which easy hiking do you have in mind?

Henry

Greg Campbell wrote:
How long will you be in the area?
Are your friends up for a little relatively easy hiking?




Aug 16, 2016 at 04:08 AM
Greg Campbell
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


rongwam wrote:
My friends are also photogs, and we plan on staying there for 2-3 days. However, I just checked the reservations for photographer tour and saw that all the slots are booked, so we might have to reschedule a trip in October. For now, we are looking at the weekend of either Oct 8th or Oct 15th. Which easy hiking do you have in mind?

Henry



There ARE other pretty slot canyons besides Jackalope within an hour or so of Page.

Willis Creek, Round Valley Draw, Buckskin, Waterholes, Hackberry, Bull Valley Gorge, Red Canyon, Red Cave, etc....



Aug 16, 2016 at 02:06 PM
mdude85
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


Horseshoe Bend is particularly beautiful at sunset (the sun sets directly behind the canyon), so I would try to reserve some time for that. The Glen Canyon Dam is also pretty cool... for a group a dam tour would probably be pretty fun. The Lake Powell Recreation Area also has many activities such as kayaking and hiking.

Fiesta Mexicana is a cute little Tex Mex/Mexican restaurant with amazing food, but the service is a bit slow. Still a great place for a margarita and fajitas after a long day of hiking.

Re: Antelope Canyon slots booked. I would call the tour company (Ken's?) just to confirm. I don't think their reservation system is particularly set in stone.



Aug 16, 2016 at 02:11 PM
childan
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


Other places to look into are Alstrom Point and like Greg said, Jackass Canyon. Alstrum Point may require a vehicle with 4 wheel drive to get to.

There are a ton of hikes out that way. There are sites out there with hikes and trails on a map. They show difficulty and sometimes pictures. There is a difficult one that takes you down to the Colorado River just below the Dam. It's called the ropes trail.

PM me if you have any questions. I'm from the area. I may not be the fastest at responding but I will try. I don't have much advice for antelope canyon. I've been a couple of times but never did it much while living there because it was always so busy. It might be a little cool when you do it but you can also rent kayaks and have boats take you up the Colorado River and dump you off just around the corner of the Dam. They usually dump you off where the ropes trail comes down.



Aug 17, 2016 at 11:08 PM
Greg Campbell
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


Keep in mind that the "Light Beam Tour" can be jarringly crowded.

Scenes like this are common. http://www.flickr.com/photos/charlesstacey/5996302033/



Aug 18, 2016 at 02:42 AM
rongwam
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


Greg Campbell wrote:
Keep in mind that the "Light Beam Tour" can be jarringly crowded.

Scenes like this are common. http://www.flickr.com/photos/charlesstacey/5996302033/


I was told that the light beam only available between March and September. Will I still be able to get it the end of September or the first week of October (just in case I cannot make reservation in the early September?

Thanks



Aug 18, 2016 at 03:38 PM
 

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Jeffrey
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


They're pretty and surely worth visiting once in your life, but the crowds and the regiment of getting in are horrible. Maybe September is a bit less, but last week was so crowded it was dehumanizing. I pulled in the huge parking lot and left immediately. Good luck.


Aug 20, 2016 at 11:26 PM
Greg Campbell
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


rongwam wrote:
I was told that the light beam only available between March and September. Will I still be able to get it the end of September or the first week of October (just in case I cannot make reservation in the early September?

Thanks


I don't know. Honestly, I think the whole 'Beam Thing' is wildly over-hyped. Suggest you call one of the guide services, as well as the people who run the "Lower Antelope" tours. Lower may have beams when Upper doesn't.

If the beams are playing, come prepared for lots of sand and grit in the air as the guide hurls shovel-fulls of sand into the air. A thin, transparent plastic bag, sealed to the lens and covering the camera is not a bad idea. Otherwise, expect grit to get into the camera controls and lens mechanism.



Aug 21, 2016 at 12:22 AM
iBill
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


I have been there many times. Stopped by last May with a couple friends, one of which had never been there before.
We decided to try Lower as it has usually been less crowded than upper in the past. Pulled in to the parking lot, and there were so many cars I knew it would be a zoo in the canyon so decided not to go in. My friend who had not been there before decided to try it, so we left him there, while we went to Page for a while and came back to pick him up later.

He was very disappointed saying there were so many people that it was almost impossible to get a decent shot, and he paid for the "photographers tour".

I hate to be a downer on this. but thought you should know if you are traveling a long distance just to shoot Antelope canyon, you may be disappointed because of the huge crowds. I am personally done with Antelope because of the crowds. There is lots of other cool stuff in the area to see, so you should research the area before you go so you will have other options.

As far as the photo tours being booked upů. maybe with the person you checked with, but there are so many different people giving photo tours of the canyon I am sure you would find a way of getting in with someone else. That is part of the problem.



Aug 21, 2016 at 06:31 PM
rongwam
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


Thanks for your advice, iBill! I will definitely checkout other options just in case that we would not have great experience with the Antelope Canyoun tours!


Aug 21, 2016 at 10:49 PM
billsamuels
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


I went to Lower Antelope Canyon in July 2015 and they had just started offering large tours to non-photographers, so I was told. It was a giant clash between the tripods and grandma's canes, plus the vidiots that see the world through their cell phone's video only and are walking blind, running into tripds and grandmas!

I didn't get to the upper canyon, but I'm hoping that they figure out how to make better use of the canyon w/o ruining it for everyone. Fortunately, I had a good camera so I could crop out the heads of the non-photographers w/o loosing too much picture quality.

I guess you just have to go enjoy and make the best of this place because it's really worth going!!! I was going to travel to Iceland, but a recent report showed just how over-crowded it is with tourism going up 25%/year and they don't have the infrastructure (hotels, restaurants, public restrooms, etc.) to deal w/ the increase in tourism so I'm not going until they get it together.




Sep 20, 2016 at 09:27 PM
Craig Gillette
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


We went to Lower last year about the second week of October. We didn't take the Photographers Tour. It was kind of busy and the specialized photo tours took more time, ran the canyon the opposite direction so not too much mutual interference. Wasn't too bad from a dust standpoint but would still take precautions. It's really quite an interesting little tour and we had a good time even if no Nat Geo quality images resulted for us. It's still visually very interesting and to me, worth the time even if you don't get the best shots. They keep to a schedule so as to avoid tour groups mixing up and to keep the flow moving.

Whether here or Iceland or ?? I'm not sure things will get any better over time. It's like the old National Geographic Effect. The internet makes it easy for a world wide audience to be exposed to an interesting location and travel isn't all that difficult so more and more people will be visiting spots. It's kind of self-limiting in that if areas or infrastructure has restrictions, then only so many can get in. Open up the hotel and other infrastructure and the visitor counts will go up. The best way to reduce impact in Antelope might be to open up or build up the opportunities in other canyons.



Sep 21, 2016 at 05:39 AM
Greg Campbell
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


Craig Gillette wrote:
The best way to reduce impact in Antelope might be to open up or build up the opportunities in other canyons.


Develop more tours on the reservation? Sure. There are dozens of similar slots in the Page area.

But no, not in the numerous public-land slots in the region. Jackalope serves as a very useful sacrificial magnet, attracting the Thundering Herds and keeping them out of the back country.


Edited on Aug 15, 2017 at 07:35 AM · View previous versions



Sep 21, 2016 at 09:28 PM
kinconorb
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


Chance2 wrote:
You'll find lots of info about both Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon here and on other forums (Upper you need to book a tour to and then take a 4 wheel drive vehicle to; Lower you just drive up to, choose from one of the on-site tour operators, and walk down into).


Are there alternatives to the booking a tour? Some friends and I are camping at Zion NP for 4-5 days later this month, we're thinking about visiting Horseshoe Bend just to snap some quick instaglam photos before driving home. It's about a 2hr drive from Zion so if we leave at 7-8am that will put us there around 9-10am. Ideally we want to leave Page, AZ by around 1pm because it's an 8-9hr drive back to California (possibly longer since we're driving back on a Sunday so everyone will likely be leaving Vegas - although we could also take the 40 back which is still an 8-9hr drive).

The upper canyon seems like a bit of a hike on foot around 8 miles roundtrip, but the lower canyon seems like you could simply park and hike in without paying an on-site tour guide. Is this at all possible?



Aug 10, 2017 at 11:40 PM
Greg Campbell
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


They put you in an SUV and shuttle you to the mouth of Upper. I don't think they'd ever let you walk there by yourself.

All the land is on the reservation. They charge a fee (and, in the case of Jackalope, require you to join a tour) to access the land.

Waterholes is similar to the two Antelope slots, if not nearly as long and deep. You can get a permit at Lechee for around ten bucks and wander in, un-escorted and without a time limit, at your leisure.



Aug 11, 2017 at 12:11 AM
mdude85
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Trip to Antelope Canyon in September


kinconorb wrote:
Are there alternatives to the booking a tour? Some friends and I are camping at Zion NP for 4-5 days later this month, we're thinking about visiting Horseshoe Bend just to snap some quick instaglam photos before driving home. It's about a 2hr drive from Zion so if we leave at 7-8am that will put us there around 9-10am. Ideally we want to leave Page, AZ by around 1pm because it's an 8-9hr drive back to California (possibly longer since we're driving back on a Sunday so everyone will likely be leaving Vegas - although we could also take the
...Show more


If you are trying to catch the sunrise then you need to be there by 5:30AM. But you could see Horseshoe Bend in the mid-morning hours and then do the lower Antelope Canyon tours which are generally 1-2 hours, and you could be done by the early afternoon. Or you could switch them -- Antelope first, then Horseshoe Bend.



Aug 14, 2017 at 04:11 PM
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