The day we started towards the north rim of the Grand Canyon, we saw a HUGE plume of smoke in the direction we were headed. We were going to camp in a little town called Jacob Lake. It's about 40 miles north of the canyon and we had planned to stay a couple of nights. Mary and her mom had never seen the north rim. I had been there a few years back with my mom. It's beautiful, pristine, quiet, animals are everywhere, a very different experience than the touristy south rim. However, it's also on the Kaibab Plateau where there have been many forest fires.
As we got closer and closer to the campground, we found out the fire was 9 miles away from where we were planning to camp. Despite our reservations, winds died down a little and we felt safe enough to stay the night. The next morning we were up and driving towards the canyon. However, we could still see smoke in the distance. The north rim can be kind of scary - there are NO GUARDRAILS on the trails. And, most of the photo stops are right on the edge and are straight down. However, it's absolutely GORGEOUS and STUNNING and EPIC. The bright angel trail is one of my favorites ever.
After we popped around for awhile, we headed back to the campground around noon. I thought the fire was getting scarier and bigger and when we got back, we packed up and a couple of hours later the entire camp area and Jacob Lake was evacuated and closed down to traffic. We got out of there just in time. The fire was 2000 acres when we were there and it looked scary. Now it's burning 66K acres.
We saw an incredible herd of bison on the way back to our campsite from the canyon.