April 22-26, 2015
The cliff walls of Canyon de Chelly (D’Shay) dramatically rise to over 1,000 feet above the streams, cottonwood trees, and small farms of the Navajo people below. People have lived in these canyons for nearly 5,000 years. Canyon de Chelly National Monument protects nearly 84,000 acres within the Navajo Reservation, and is administered by the National Park Service.
The national monument preserves the history and the culture of Dine – the Navajo people. To the outside world it is known as Canyon de Chelly. To the people who live here it is Tsegi (SAY-ih), a physical and spiritual home. An Indian guide is required to enter the canyon. We HAD to go down there! It was so beautiful and our guide, Terrill, was fun and informative. But I must admit the jeep ride itself was a blast. Mike and I have been talking about getting a jeep and this really helped push us toward it even more.
We drove past little homes, farms, animals grazing and stopped many times to view the ancient ruins and petroglyphs.
We took our own car on the 34-mile North Rim Drive, and the next day we took the 37-mile South Rim Drive. We stopped at all of the pull-outs, some of which required a short hike to get to the overlook. At several of the overlooks you will find local Navajo selling their beautiful artwork (jewelry, painting, sculpting).
We had ZERO wifi or cellular service for the entire 5 days that we stayed here. I can NOT believe that we lived without it for 7 years on the sailboat, because 5 days off-line about killed us! We were having major withdrawal, so we left on a rainy day and headed straight to Moab, Utah. We will spend 3 weeks in this favorite place of ours.