Visiting Monument Valley

Trip Start Jun 18, 2005
Trip End Jul 27, 2005

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Flag of United States  , Utah
Friday, July 1, 2005

We can't believe this land. We left Lake Powell this morning and headed for Monument Valley. Knowing this was once a plateau under an inland ocean is mind boggling. Every once in awhile we spotted a mesa that appeared to identify what was once the level of the plateau. Everything else was created by differential erosion. The rolling hills covered by sage brush only accented the pillars of sandstone. The closer we came to Monument Valley, the more frequently these pillars took on names. There was the everlasting snake whose wife was the owl. When he stayed, out of loyalty she stayed. As we entered Monument Valley there were the two mittens, one left, one right. There were buttes named for historical figures and other outcroppings named for images they resembled. Riding through the area on an open van it was easy to remember John Wayne in Stagecoach dashing across the landscape with dust clouds following. The story behind the valley is, in itself, inspiring. A couple named Goulding, moved into the valley and stayed while the Navajos watched, expecting them to leave. When they were convinced they were not going to leave, they were accepted and today, after their death, the Navajos have dedicated the valley to their spirits who are watching over the valley of monuments. Returning to Lake Powell we made a quick (if you can count almost a strip search for Al to get in) at the visitor's center at Glen Falls Dam and then it was time for dinner and a good night's sleep. Tomorrow we visit Bryce Canyon.
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