April 3

Congratulations to Laura Tarver of Magnolia, Texas, who submitted the top-rated image in this week’s It’s A Snap travel photo contest.

Last September, the airline Tarver and her boyfriend work for had just closed its Los Angeles base, and the couple was in the process of transferring out to Houston. To make the best of their long road trip from California to Texas, the two decided to swing through the Grand Canyon to check it off of their been-there-done-that list.

They camped one night at the Grand Canyon, and the next morning set off to hike the South Rim. “About 20 minutes to the hike, we saw this chubby little squirrel working the crowd of tourists,” Tarver said. “This guy was not afraid of people. In fact, he would walk right up to people with snacks.”

Tarver said some animal lovers had gathered around the squirrel commented about how it’s not a good idea to feed animals in the park. It was after the crowd simmered down that she captured the shot.

“My boyfriend, Mike Penalosa, usually takes most of the pictures while I am typically in awe of where we are with my mouth open,” she said. “However, this time, I couldn’t resist the photogenic squirrel.”

Tarver said that the remainder of the trip to Houston was also quite a scene because they reached their destination right before Hurricane Ike hit. “It was kind of odd seeing all the traffic build up going the opposite way while we were the only ones heading south to the coast.”

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