Four Corners
May, 2000

We left Mesa Verde National Park and headed southwest to Four Corners.  There's a small monument on the Navajo Nation and Mitch and Max could hardly wait to get there.  They planned on how they would stand in four states at one time and who would get to be the first one on the corners.
Mitch stood in all four states.


Canyon de'Chelly
Navajo Nation - Arizona

(Pronounced d'SHAY)
 
The canyons here are spectacular. The rich blue sky, brilliant red sandstone and majestic spires and cliffs are incredible.  In the spring the sandy bottom becomes a shallow river and in the summer it's mostly dry sand.  Navajo families build there homes here and farm the canyon floors as they have for centuries.

To the right is Mitch with Spider Rock in the background.   This is a free standing spire that's 800 feet tall.

This National Monument is located on Navajo Nation land and operated by the local tribe.  We traveled on the canyon floor with a Navajo guide. Having a licensed guide is a requirement to enter the canyon.  This ensures the protection of the archeological sites and the privacy of the residents living on the canyon floor.  Our guide's grandmother lives here and we saw the small orchard where he played as a child.
We learned about the historic relationship between the Navajo people and the US Calvary in the 1800s. The US Government wanted to move the native people to a reservation. Our guide showed us a tall plateau where the Indians fled and hid from the army. They were soon discovered by Kit Carson and the Calvary.  The army set up camp and and waited for the Indians to either starve or surrender.  It was very sad to hear this story from a descendent of these people.
We saw petroglyphs etched onto the cliffs.  Here is one with the infamous Kopapelli. 

 
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