Arizona Journals

On the Plateau, Part II: Northern Arizona

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A June 2006 trip to Arizona by callen60

Vermillion Cliffs near Marble Canyon Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona More Photos
Quote: From Kanab to Kayenta, Kaibab National Forest to Navajo National Monument, we left Zion and continued our Colorado Plateau road trip in the amazing Arizona Strip.

On the Plateau, Part II: Northern Arizona

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Overview

Vermillion Cliffs near Marble Canyon Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
Millions of years ago, the bed of a massive inland lake rose upwards, creating a plateau larger than most western states. Thanks to the work of erosion, the Colorado Plateau is now one of earth's most spectacular regions. You could easily travel here for a month, avoid the most well-known attractions, and come home satisfied. I’m not sure why you’d want to, but you'd have a great time. Our ‘Grand Circle’ across the region began in Las Vegas: this journal describes our road trip east through the Arizona Strip, that portion of the Grand Canyon State north of the Colorado. The well-known advantages of the Grand Canyon's North Rim—that is, less people, less heat—also extend to the Kaiba...Read More
Vermillion Cliffs near Marble Canyon Photo, Arizona, United States
Quote:
Leaving Kanab (elevation 4900’) Alternate US89 (a.k.a. 89A) quickly descends 2000’ and brings you along the gorgeous (and aptly named) Vermillion Cliffs, the reddest rock in this red-rock region. I was glad to ride shotgun—I couldn’t keep my eyes off the deep red cliffs, the southernmost stage of the Grand Staircase.These ascending stair-step edges stretch from Hurricane, UT to Tuba City, AZ, and the vermillion-colored bottom-stair runs along 89A for much of that distance. My youngest daughter, confused and intrigued by the idea of a natural staircase, wanted to know where we co...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 10, 2006

Kaibab National Forest

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Attraction | "East Rim Overlook, Kaibab National Forest"

Kaibab National Forest Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
Call up Jacob Lake, AZ on (almost) any on-line map site (Google misplaces it NW by 25 miles). You’ll see a spiderweb of gray roads radiating south in all directions: this is the ‘highway’ system of the Kaibab National Forest, a gravel-road network through this alpine environment (the AAA Indian Country Guide Map shows them all). It leads to any number of spectacular views of the Grand Canyon and Colorado Plateau. The National Park boundary is still 25 miles away (and the rim another 15), but even 2,000 square miles of park doesn’t fully encompass the entirety of the Canyon, leaving many overlooks in the National Forest. We stopped at the Forest Visitor Center in Jacob Lake; they had...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 10, 2006

Kaibab National Forest
800 South Sixth Street
Grand Canyon, Arizona 86046
(928) 635-8200

Glen Canyon Dam

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Attraction | "Glen Canyon Dam and Lake Powell"

Glen Canyon Dam Photo, Page, Arizona
Quote:
Do you wanna go here? I don’t know… I’m not sure I did. On a scale that runs from ‘Full-Out Tamer of Nature’ on the right to ‘Hug Trees, Not People’ on the left, I’m somewhat left of center. 12 years ago, I spent a half-day at Hoover Dam, my reactions pinging between ‘Wow, what a project’ and offense at the 60-year-old mosaics celebrating ‘subduing the destructive forces of nature’.This newer dam is from the same mold. One of many proposed Colorado projects, Glen Canyon is one of three actually built. Its Carl Hayden Visitor Center memorializes the late senator who spent 57 years in ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 10, 2006

Glen Canyon Dam
National Recreation Area
Page, Arizona 86040
928-608-6404

Navajo Bridge

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Attraction | "Navajo Bridge and Marble Canyon"

Navajo Bridge Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
How do you cross the Grand Canyon? Well, for starters, you look for a spot where the rims are closer than the 10-mile separation in mid-canyon. Early travelers followed the 18th-century priests Escalante and Dominguez, who forded the Colorado far upstream, never approaching the Canyon (their ‘Crossing of the Fathers’ is now submerged under ‘Padre Bay’ in Lake Powell). After the Mormons began settling the Colorado Plateau, John Lee established a ferry in the same general area. Lee’s Ferry was the crossing for half a century, until the 1929 completion of the steel bridge here over Marble Canyon. It's elegant design earned a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark designation....Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 10, 2006

Navajo Bridge

Grand Canyon, Arizona

Navajo National Monument

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Attraction

Navajo National Monument Photo, Arizona, United States
Quote:
This is an out-of-the-way place—but if you get anywhere near it, take the last step and go. We hadn’t planned to take the turn north off of US 160 down the 9-mile spur to the Visitor Center for this small but dispersed monument; we were worried about reaching Monument Valley in time to meet our guide for a sunset tour. But having made better time than expected, we decided that a short visit was better than none.We were glad we came. The visitor center features exhibits on Navajo cultures, the vanished Ancestral Puebloans who built the dwellings preserved here, and demonstrations of weaving, jewelry and other traditional Navajo crafts. There’s a 30-minute movie (made by a local middle schoo...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on July 10, 2006

Navajo National Monument

Tonalea, Arizona 86044
(928) 672-2700