It has been quite a while since I’ve laid hands on the site. There’s a perfectly good explanation for this: We’re currently about 2,000 miles east of our home in Mesa.
After trying to decide what to do, I’ve come to the conclusion that we will continue to document the cities and towns and attractions of Arizona, along with news when I come across it. Given the national coverage of Arizona, I suspect that this will mean a little more politics will show up. I’ll try not to let my biases show if it does.
The other thing I want to do with this post is mention some of the “bucket list” items that I haven’t been able to do in Arizona (yet!). We didn’t expect to leave Arizona any time soon, so we left a number of places unexplored.
One of the big items yet to do for me is Monument Valley. The iconic red buttes of the valley were made famous in several John Ford movies, starting with “Stagecoach” in 1939. The valley is now a Navajo park. You can explore parts of the park on your own or you can hire a guide or tour to take you through the park.
Canyon de Chelly is another Navajo park, though it is also a National Monument. It is Navajo because it is still their home. You can drive along the rim of the canyon and you can follow one trail to visit White House Ruins without a Navajo guide, but otherwise you must either take a tour or hire a guide to ride with you. If you choose to use your own vehicle, you will need a good 4-wheel-drive setup. If you choose to hike to the Ruins, plan on taking a couple of hours to go from the rim to the ruins and back. It is a 600′ climb to get back out of the canyon, so plan accordingly and take plenty of water. The White House Ruins are famous for the massive sandstone cliff that dwarfs the ruins themselves.
A third Navajo site is Antelope Canyon. This is a slot canyon, with a very narrow width and a depth of up to 120′. The canyon is famous for its beautiful formations and colors. The challenge is to get to the right place at the right time to get the sun coming down at the right angle to penetrate to the bottom of the canyon and then to take the perfect picture in the short time available. A guide is also required for entrance into the canyons and time is limited as well. Beyond that, the reason it is a slot canyon is the way water flows through the canyon is a flash flood. A rain storm miles away can drop rain that will enter the canyon without warning for the unwary. I tried to find a good image to go with this, but there are so many that it’s impossible. Just do a Google image search for the canyon and marvel at its beauty.
I will hold up here and add additional bucket list items in another post.