This is a shot of Zoroaster Temple at sunset on Saturday April 21, 1973. I had taken around 2 weeks to make my way to the canyon stopping along the way to camp, visit a buddy at Ft. Polk (poor bastard got nailed in the very last draft) and my sister in Houston. By the time I reached the canyon I'd lost track of the days.
We started hiking that day on the south rim, coming down the South Kaibab Trail. We crossed the river on the suspension bridge, hiked up Bright Angel Canyon past Phantom Ranch and headed up the Clear Creek Trail on our way to the Ottoman Amphitheater. We made a dry camp at the base of Zoroaster - the first night I ever spent in the Grand Canyon.
The next morning I woke in my bag to the song of canyon wrens and another sound - the most eerie sound I've ever heard. The wind was blowing up the canyon from the west and with it came the faint sound of a heavenly choir. It came and went as the wind blew and faded.
Chills ran up my spine. I thought, "My god, it's the end of the world. If the Christians are right, I'm fucked." I had not lived what you might call a "good" life up to that point. I lay back in my bag and looked at the sky fully expecting it to open, trumpets to sound & for Jesus Christ himself to come drifting down. I managed to not shit myself.
After a while I couldn't stand it anymore. I poked my buddy and said, "Hey, wake up - do you hear that?" My friend (my best friend's older brother) is even more a-religious & cynical than I am. He listened for a minute and chuckled. "It's Easter morning. There's a choir singing at the sunrise service at the Shrine of the Ages up on the south rim". I have never been so relieved.
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Keep calm and fish on...
There's a fine line between fishing and just sitting there looking stupid