Mar 1 2011
Like all slot canyons, Antelope Canyon is the result of repeated flash flooding cutting through sandstone. The water scours and carves it way deeper and deeper, producing the unique flowing effect shape of slot canyons.
Due to the deepness and narrowness of slot canyons, the bottoms are usually cast in darkness. Sunlight only reaches all the way down when the sun is at its highest points, and generally only during the summer. Antelope Canyon receives full lighting from about March through the first week of October each year.
Exploring a slot canyon can be risky if the chance of rainfall is present, even if the rainfall is some distance away. There is nowhere to escape a flash flood and in August 19997, eleven tourists were trapped and drowned in Lower Antelope Canyon. A thunderstorm, seven miles away, had unleashed enough rain that eventually funneled down the canyon, surprising and killing the tourists.
Antelope Canyon is on Indian land, and is accessible only by guided tour. More information can be found here.