So Long, It’s Been Good to Know You

It’s time to move on to different things, if not necessarily bigger or better things.  Bigger than the GCNP is hardly possible, and better is completely subjective.  Nonetheless, we are on our way to Zion National Park by way of Lake Mead and a yet to be named diesel mechanic.  But before we leave our narrative of the Canyon, it is time to talk of sunsets and memorials.

 

A Limp Sunset from Yaki Point
A Limp Sunset from Yaki Point

We suffered through an hour and a half of cold and wind at Yaki Point hoping for the sun to break through the clouds low on the western horizon.  The colorful reverse sunset (where the late day colors are reflected off the cliffs many miles away) never happened.  Kat got a picture at the end, and one can imagine better sunsets on better days.

 

Entrance to Shrine of the Ages
Entrance to Shrine of the Ages

The Shrine of the Ages is a cemetery within the park on the main loop (Blue Route) of the shuttle.  It is in some ways an Arlington National Cemetery for the fallen heroes of the Grand Canyon.  Emery Kolb and his wife are interred there.  There is a monument for the casualties of a mid-air collision above the Canyon in the 50’s which lead to much stronger oversight of commercial flights by the FAA.  But the surest path to a plot in the Shrine of the Ancients is to have been someone who helped make the Grand Canyon National Park what it is.  That means its founders and the park rangers who died in the line of duty.

 

Emery Kolb Headstone
Emery Kolb Headstone
Here Lies Fred Johnson, Park Ranger
Here Lies Fred Johnson, Park Ranger

 

Hard to Read, But Still Here After 90 Years
Hard to Read, But Still Here After 90 Years
Life Is Hard and Dangerous Out Here, Even Today
Life Is Hard and Dangerous Out Here, Even Today
Memorial to 1956 Plane Crash Collision Over the Canyon
Memorial to 1956 Plane Crash Collision Over the Canyon

 

One last thought on memorials and mortality.  Mankind has been on this planet for a bit more than 10,000 years.  In terms of the history of life on earth, as expressed in terms of the time of one single day, we have been around for the last three seconds of Earth’s day, to date.  And for whatever odd reasons, if any, the last hundred years have been the hottest of the planet’s last 200.000 years.

 

A Renaissance Man, Killed by Poachers.  If You Don't Think Life Is Ruled by Randomness, Think Again.
A Renaissance Man, Killed by Poachers. If You Don’t Think Life Is Ruled by Randomness, Think Again.

We are killing our planet.  When will we do something?

2 thoughts on “So Long, It’s Been Good to Know You

  1. I didn’t realize there was a cemetery in GC. I love to visit cemeteries – so much interesting history. We just left Zion on Thursday – it was beautiful! We stayed in the Watchman campground and really liked it. Enjoy your stay there.

    Like

    1. I didn’t know either. It’s a stop on the blue shuttle route, and our driver pointed it out. Rangering is quite the hazardous task.

      Jackson

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s