Sometimes it must seem to our readers that we discover places and keep going back, and that is true to some extent and several factors. Of course endless time and money would allow us to go somewhere new every year, but that isn’t the case. And routes are sometimes predicted by the weather. There are only a couple of safe ways to travel south in the winter. And let’s not forget when you love a location why deprive yourself form seeing it. Hence many trips to the west coast, Oregon of course, and the Lake Mead area. BUT this year we are exploring new National Parks and areas that have been on our list for some time.
This portion of our trip found us passing through some old territory to see some new. After leaving Laughlin we headed east to discover The Petrified Forest National Park in eastern Arizona.
It is hard to explain the terrain in the park, so I will just show photos and some dialogue.
One fact to note is that Route 66 travels through parts of the park. If you look closely in this photo you will see the crest of the highway in the grass. When you are up close and personal it is easy to find, so if the picture doesn’t provide you with the view, you will have to use imagination or perhaps travel here!
There were several hikes in the park, leading to unique views and memories of times far ago. Here is the physical evidence of people living long ago in this area. The first house is called Agate House and is constructed of petrified tree “stones”. The second is only a small part of what was called Puerco Pueblo housing, a conglomerate of 8-9 rooms, most the size of a closet in today’s houses.
This was an excellent stop for viewing petroglyphs. Often a sign will tell you they exist but you need to really focus on far away hills and rocks. Not the case at Newspaper Rock, where there were rock faces filled with stories of ancient times.
Our favourite hike was into the area called Blue Mesa. There was an insistence that the colors of the rocks were blue, but we felt the truer description would be purple. Whatever you decide, the landscape and colors were breathtaking.
And of course I need to show you pictures of the petrified wood. Don’t forget we are talking about literally miles and miles of this. Some of the biggest trees we have viewed since the California Redwoods. You do not realize these trees are now rocks until you touch them, or notice the colors within.
It has been a great stop in this fabulous countryside. Definitely worth the stop for the views and for the hiking.
We are excited to move into Utah now and a few weeks in more new to us landscape. We have just purchased a new camera and can’t wait to try it out on the parks of eastern Utah.