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Published: January 11th 2020
Well, with the last three days in Sedona, the Grand Canyon and now Monument Valley, the camera’s panorama and scenery functions have almost melted off.
Our last day in Sedona started with a Pink Jeep tour of the Broken Arrow Trail. Apparently made famous by Western movies, it’s now the location for some serious off-roading, sometimes feeling like we were heading almost vertically, down, up and around places like the Devil’s Staircase and Chicken Rock. We got some interesting lessons in the history, geology and biology of the area and the girls got some excitement as we bumped over it all, all delivered at the hands of a very entertaining guide.
A cowboy lunch in Sedona, enjoying some of the local delicacies - fried prickly pear chips dipped in the sauce of its fruit - followed by a potter around the cute local shops. A quick drive to the Grand Canyon before checking into our room and a quick few sunset shots before the following day’s promised cloud. A quick wander around the icy paths for dinner before settling in for the night...
...or so we thought. Apparently our abode was so cosy that one of the not-so-native
members of the local wildlife also decided to move in...meaning a less than restful sleep and a room shift the next morning.
Unfortunately, the day was grey and misty but the lower light did allow us to appreciate the contours and crevices of the expanse of canyon before us. The icy conditions meant that the Rim Trail was the only option for walking, and a child with a crippling fear of heights meant it was slow going. The sun pepped through the clouds and we enjoyed the various vistas around the canyon and some lessons in geology. The girls enjoyed yet more launching themselves in snow before retiring for an early dinner and a fantastic sunset light show on the walk back.
The new day dawned clear and bright (and mercifully rat-free) so we headed to the Desert View lookout in the east, allowing us a glimpse of the Colorado River, while responsible for carving out the canyon, now dwarfed by its sheer vastness.
Next stop, after a colourful drive through the Navajo Painted Desert, was Tuba City and some dinosaur tracks...which we almost missed with the wide variety of quality cuisine Tuba City had to offer.
Fortunately, we noticed the hand-painted signs for dinosaurs as we sped towards the Golden Arches, but managed a quick turnaround. And lucky we did, for there, in a completely unassuming field beside a dirt road, with only a few market shacks to mark its location, was an amazing collection of tracks, bones, eggs and poo. Most impressive were the pterodactyl tracks, where you could actually note where it has taken off, and a T-Rex print. Apparently the area was a swamp, where they all used to congregate, and it was very evident in the prints all over the rock.
Finally arrived at Monument Valley, just in time for a short drive and then a stunning view of the sunset from our room, quickly followed by a stunning moonrise right between the buttes - a very special sight! Looking forward to learning more about the area tomorrow with our Navajo tour!
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