June 25, 2012

Trip Start Apr 28, 2012
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed
USA RV Park Gallup
Read my review - 4/5 stars

Flag of United States  , New Mexico
Monday, June 25, 2012

We left the campground around
9:00 and headed west on I-40, we had to retrace our steps to get onto Rt. U.S. 180
in Holbrook AZ, where we headed east to the Petrified Forest National
Park.  At the Visitors Center we were
fortunate to be in time to listen to a lecture by one of the rangers about the
formation of the Petrified Forest; and after that we watched the film presented
by the national park.  Immediately behind
the Visitors Center was a marked trail through the field of petrified logs, this
is not an actual forest of standing trees, but pieces of the logs that were
petrified and are now scattered around the area, many are visible but they
claim that there are just as many pieces that are still buried under the sand
and rock.  After leaving the Visitors
Center we headed up the road through the park, passing many pull-offs that gave
us different views of the petrified logs. 
Further along the roadway we entered the “Painted Desert”, an area where
the colors in the layers of sandstone are very vivid, ranging from white to
shades of red and shades of gray.  Looking
across the valley at the canyon walls the colors vary dramatically, whereas the
colors on the valley floor seem to blend together for a very dramatic
effect.  The formation of this area of
Arizona started over 225 million years ago when it was a tropical environment
with trees towering over 200 feet.  Volcanic
activity, uplifting of the Colorado Plateau, wind, water, climate change and time
have all combined over the past 200 million years to create the land we see
today.  We left the park after spending 5
hours viewing the magnificent landscape and taking a few short walks, but we
could have spent a lot more time there if the day wasn’t passing by and we didn’t
need to find a campsite for the night.  The
exit from the park brought us onto I-40, where we headed east and out of Arizona.  We stopped for the night in Gallup, New
Mexico, at USA RV Park on Route 66.  Upon
inquiring about a site for the night I was informed that they were full because
of a junior rodeo that is in town; the manager did however offer a partial
site, one without a sewer hookup that was next to the laundry facility, and
because the next campground was 50 miles away we took him up on the offer.  The site turned out to be very suitable, and
we can use the dump station in the morning. 
They were holding a BBQ dinner at the club house, so we took advantage
of the opportunity to have dinner out without driving to a restaurant, and it
proved very enjoyable. 

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My Review Of The Place I Stayed

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