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Page & Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Introducing Page & Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

An enormous lake tucked into a landlocked swath of desert? You can guess how popular it is to play in the spangly waters of Lake Powell. Part of the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, the country's second-largest reservoir was created by the construction of Glen Canyon Dam in 1963. To house the scores of workers an entire town was built from scratch near the dam. Now a modern town with hotels, restaurants and supermarkets, Page is a handy base for lake visitors.

Straddling the Utah-Arizona border, the 186-mile-long lake has 1960 miles of empty shoreline set amid striking red-rock formations, sharply cut canyons and dramatic desert scenery. Lake Powell is famous for its houseboating, which appeals to families and college students alike. Though hundreds of houseboats ply its waters at any given time, it's possible to explore its secluded inlets, bays, coves and beaches for days while hardly seeing anyone at all.

The gateway to Lake Powell is the small town of Page, which sits right next to Glen Canyon Dam in the far southwest corner of the recreation area. Hwy 89 (called N Lake Powell Blvd in town) forms the main strip.

Aramark runs five of the lake's six marinas, including the often frenetic Wahweap Marina, 6 miles north of Page. The only other marina on the Arizona side is the much more peaceful Antelope Point Marina, which opened in 2007 on the Navajo Reservation about 8 miles east of Page. Amenities and services vary by marina. Check www.lakepowell.com for specifics. You'll find a restaurant, gift shop and water sport rentals, from boats to water skis to kayaks, at both Wahweap and Bullfrog marinas.