Trip Start Mar 12, 2011
109Trip End Dec 15, 2011
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Where I stayed
Well what sort of Indian summer? Its "fall" but the temperatures are more like high summer apparently,although the first snows fell last week .And Indian?.Well we are in Navajo Nation and all my pre-conceptions were of a beleagered minority population kept in a state of suspended animation by mind-altering substances similar to First Nation people I had seen on Vancouver Island.
But these Navajo are different.Physically robust,they also have obviously got assets beyond the casino ownership that they are famous for.The hotel we are staying at is staffed mainly by Navajo's and Roger and I are going to try to settle our differences as to whether this represents their role in life tomorrow.Are the majority that work relegated to menial tasks whilst the ownership of big enterprises does not really help their general population at all - or are they truly integrated and are represented evenly across the cultural and social scene?Your boys will do some sculling around tomorrow.Not quite Louis Theroux but we'll see what we can discover
Oh and the country?It must say something when you choose not to visit the Grand Canyon.Apart from both having seen it before - Roger more recently than I - the trip through Monument Valley was truly an assault on the senses,I didn't even need my tinted glasses.
Once again we have spoken with some really friendly people and felt an affinity for the Harley Davison fraternity that swan past us.
Note for Jamie: we passed a cycling group doing a section of the valley.Looked a bit hot for such exploits but what a thing to have done.
Set off from Cortez at our usual eary start, making our way to the 4 corners monument. This is the only place in the USA where 4 states all meet together, quite surprising seeing how many of the states are bounded by straight lines. However, here meet Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico. here really isnt all that much here, theres a plaque on the ground showing where all 4 meet, and 4 large stones donated by the surveying Society telling about how the first surveyors put the line sone 8000 feet wring - thats well over a mile out! They also tell how repeated attempts to correct the error were blocked by the then President and Congress (or was it the Senate?) but no indication of when they did put it right
Quite a lot to pay for not much, but as we can say that we have been to a unique place, I wont grumble.
Went from there back into Arizona which caused a bit of a problem. Arizona is one hour west of California, but it doesnt have Summer Time, so theres no change from California. The change comes as you go into New Mexico/Colorado, which are on the same time as Arizona, but they do have Daylight Saving, so there is a time difference. Returning to Arizona, however, the time hadnt changed from Colorado, because North Arizona does have daylight saving, so they are different from central Arizona. Keeping up/ No, and I'm not surprised. All this will get worse shortly, as daylight saving ends, so the time will go forward, back, or stay the same.
Anyway, we then detoured north into Utah so as to drive south again through the Monument Valley. In a way, from our trip with Janet & Gordon, i knew what to expect - mountains. But whatever anyone says about mountains, they are always spectacular, and these were no exception
Exited Monument Valley, and went into the Navajo National Monument. Essentially, this is the place where you can see another 2 major cliff dwellings, so we didnt spend a long time here, although they were really spectacular. Another tourist commented that they have no sense of perspective, as you are looking across the valley. Re Pats' comment, no they weren't sparticularly small people. The stone was apparently brought up from below the area, rather than cust from the cave, the cave was already there and made by erosion.
From there we droveto Page, where we are going to spend the night, wit a trip tomorrow to...
But you'll hear about that tomorrow, not now
Mileage 287. Altitude 4248, max altitude was 7339. Climbed 11178 ft altogether. If you arent interested in this, dont worry, its just a record for me.