“In researching a perfect companion piece to ‘Winter Symphony,’ I reflected while hiking in the Grand Canyon,” said Bill Phillips. “By mid-morning, small white tufts begin to form against the brilliant blue Arizona sky. By early afternoon, these clouds have grown to take the form of immense castles towering over the Coconino Plateau. And if you listen closely, you’ll hear the roll of distant thunder carried along on the breeze.
“The first few drops of rain vaporize as they embrace the Canyon’s sun-baked rocks. But, within a few minutes, the sun and heat along the South Rim have relinquished their grip, replaced by pounding torrents of rain. The Canyon’s walls echo with the sound of flash floods as the seasonal torrents force rocks ever downward to create new rapids in the Colorado River far below. Nature has unleashed her power and the Canyon disappears as you strain to make out the landmarks in mid-Canyon, as the juniper and agave provide only a vague outline against a curtain of gray along the rim of the Kaibab Plateau.
“Then, as swiftly as it began, the rain ends. The roar of the deluge is replaced by individual droplets falling from the boughs of Ponderosa Pine. The world is still, the rumble of thunder recedes and the fragrance of sage and wet earth surrounds you. Suddenly, a single beam of light flashes into the Canyon and the grand finale begins as sheets of rain reflect back a growing rainbow. Isis Temple shines forth as the sunlight pushes eastward, giving its warmth once more before evening, blessing us with the Canyon’s never-ending revelation.”