Friday, May 10, 2013

Sunset Crater N.M., Wupatki N.M. and Walnut Canyon N.M.

It was finally time to start our trek North to spend the summer in Washington State with our family.  We plan a slow trip with lots of sight-seeing on the way.  Our first stop was Williams Arizona at an RV park.  Nothing exciting there so only one night.  Looking over the maps of the area Jackie found 3 National Monuments that we have not visited and with a little more research we found Bonito Campground just outside of Sunset Crater N.M.  It was a forest service campground with only dry camping but paved roads and lots of trees.  We backed into site 10 figuring this would give us the most sun (solar) during the day and then spent three days hiking all three of the N.M.
Our first stop was Sunset Crater N.M. where it had erupted sometime between 1040 and 1100.

The side of the mountain and the surrounding areas for miles is now all cinders.

But there is also the remains of lava flow.  Nasty, nasty with all sharp edges, don't want to fall here.

Jackie peaking around a large flow of lava.

Wupatki N.M. consists of several areas of ruins dating back to around 1100 AD.  Our first stop was at Wukoki Pueblo.

Then it was off to the Visitor Center and a tour of Wupatki Pueblo with over 100 rooms and thousands of people living in the area at one time.

Our last stop was Walnut Canyon N.M. where the dwellings were located both on the upper surface and also along the cliff.

 It was over 200 steps down to the Island Trail--we were just a little sore the next day!

A lot of the canyon walls had very unique erosion that just had to be photographed.

These were three great National Monuments, not to be missed.

To be continued...

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