Red Rocks and Cliff Dwellers

Trip Start Nov 23, 2009
Trip End Mar 01, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Arizona
Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Another glorious day. We headed west on HW 12 and soon left the spiral red rock formations behind. Through wintery white mountains and pine forests along HW 89. After Kanab we opt to continue on 89A (alternate) past Vermillion Plateau.  

We stopped at small sign next to road "Cliff Dwellings" near Soap Creek at the foot of the Vermillion Cliffs. Aparently in 1927, Blanche Russel's car broke down as she travelled through this area and was forced to camp overnight. She liked it so well that she bought property and stayed. The stone buildings under these ballanced rocks were built shortly after that in 1930.

Soon after, we arrive at Lee's Ferry. Our first sighting of the Colorado River. A foot bridge accross the river offers great views of the deep canyon it carves through. This is the point where many rafters and kayakers enter the Colorado on 1 to 18 day trips along through the Grand Canyon and beyond.

At Cameron we turned off on HW 64 towards Grand Canyon National Park. All along this area Indians have small stands along the HW where they sell silver and beaded jewelry, pottery and woven rugs (mostly low quality). We make it to the Hovenweep view point just as the sun sets and casts it's last orange glow on the breath-taking Canyon.

We stayed 7 miles outside the park in Tusayan. Hotel prices are a lot less expensive there.
We split delicious full slab rib dinner at Yippee-ei-o! Steak house. Back at the hotel we got our backpacks ready for our trip into the Canyon.

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