Horseshoe Bend in Page, Arizona is a breathtaking natural wonder that draws visitors from all over the world. This stunningly beautiful sight is formed by a meander in the Colorado River, where the river appears to make a sharp turn in the shape of a horseshoe. With its emerald green waters and sheer sandstone cliffs, Horseshoe Bend offers a stunning view and a great opportunity for photography. In this blog post, we will explore the history of Horseshoe Bend, who owns it, the views and photography, the location near Antelope Canyon, and the walking path.
History of Horseshoe Bend
The formation of Horseshoe Bend dates back millions of years when the Colorado River began to carve its way through the sandstone cliffs that make up the region. The process of erosion created a horseshoe-shaped curve in the river, which is now known as Horseshoe Bend.
The first documented visit to Horseshoe Bend was by the explorer John Wesley Powell in 1869. Powell and his team were the first to navigate the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon. During their journey, they encountered Horseshoe Bend and were awed by its beauty. Nearby Lake Powell, created by Glen Canyon Dam, was named after Wesley Powell.
In the late 1800s and early 1900s, Horseshoe Bend was a popular spot for tourists and photographers. However, it wasn’t until the 1990s that the site began to attract significant attention from visitors. In 1994, the Bureau of Land Management designated Horseshoe Bend as a public recreation area.
Today, Horseshoe Bend is one of the most popular natural attractions in Arizona and draws thousands of visitors every year. Social media has helped to propel this amazing site into the spotlight and increase awareness and a desire to visit.
Who Runs Horseshoe Bend?
Horseshoe Bend is located within Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and is managed by the National Park Service. The parking lot is located in and managed by the City of Page. One section, approximately half of the U-shape, is owned by Horseshoe Bend Slot Canyon Tours. This private section is not open to the public but is accessible when booking a private tour that combines the overlook along with a tour to Secret Antelope Canyon.
The Views and Photography of Horseshoe Bend
The view from Horseshoe Bend is simply breathtaking. The Colorado River is visible as it snakes its way through the sandstone cliffs, forming a perfect horseshoe shape. The emerald green waters of the river contrast beautifully with the red sandstone cliffs, making for a truly mesmerizing sight. The cliffs at Horseshoe Bend are approximately 1,000 feet high from the river level. The viewpoint itself is situated at an elevation of about 4,200 feet above sea level.
Horseshoe Bend is a popular spot for photographers, and it’s easy to see why. The unique shape of the bend and the stunning colors of the landscape make for some truly stunning photos. Visitors can take photos from the edge of the cliff, but it’s important to exercise caution as the drop is steep.
To get the best photos, it’s recommended to visit Horseshoe Bend at sunset or sunrise. The soft light of the early morning or late evening can create a warm and inviting atmosphere, and the shadows cast by the cliffs can add depth and dimension to photos. As great as the photos are from this viewpoint, seeing it in person is even better.
Location near Antelope Canyon
Horseshoe Bend is located near Antelope Canyon, another popular natural attraction in Arizona. Antelope Canyon is a slot canyon formed by erosion over millions of years, and its unique rock formations and colorful walls make it a must-visit destination for nature lovers and photographers.
Antelope Canyon is located about 10 miles from Horseshoe Bend, and visitors can easily visit both sites in one day. It’s smart to book a tour that includes both Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon in advance, as they can get busy during peak season.
Walking Path at Horseshoe Bend
To get to Horseshoe Bend, visitors must take a short walk along a sandy trail. The trail is relatively flat and easy to walk, but it can get hot during the summer months, so it’s important to bring plenty of water and wear sunscreen.
The fee is $10 per vehicle or $5 per person for those entering on foot or bike. The fee is collected at the entrance to the parking lot, and it is valid for one day. The entrance fee is used to help maintain and preserve the area. It is important to note that the entrance fee is subject to change, so it’s a good idea to check the most up-to-date information before visiting. Additionally, there are no tickets required for Horseshoe Bend, and visitors can simply pay the entrance fee upon arrival. Day tours from Las Vegas that visit Horseshoe Bend include the admission prices.