Our final day at this campsite near the Walnut Canyon National Monument starts out with a long walk for The Chiweenie Brothers to give them some exercise to start their day off right. When finished with that I finish breaking camp and we head out to take in the monument before the “to-do” list gets in the way.
You know those days when everything that can go wrong does? It’s one of those days for us. Breaking camp, visiting Walnut Canyon National Monument and finding out I could have taken the dogs on one of the trails—oh well, The Chiweenie Brothers never tire of another walk!—dropping my camera, a Wally stop, laundry, Charlie throwing up in the van, getting the van’s tires rotated. It was a very trying morning, but like all “those kinds of days“, it got better, but I’m getting ahead of myself.
The highlight of our day: Walnut Canyon, just east of Flagstaff is so named for the small walnut grove growing there. It was once home, 800 years ago, to the Sinaugua (without water) people who built their cliff dwelling homes in the limestone layers resting on Coconino limestone.
The walnut trees, leafless this time of year, grow in the bottom of the canyon
The cliff house of the Sinaugua people
All photos are taken at the rim of the canyon. There is a trail to hike to the bottom, but it looks like it would be a brutal trip back up to the top. My excuse not to do it is that the dogs can’t stay in the van that long, and I have a ton of things to do today. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!
We head out and get our “to-dos” done and head north on Hwy 89A.
I drive about 30 miles—and I may be way off on this. I am so tired—I spy the sign for Wupatki National Monument. Hey! I want to see that! Blessedly I find our secluded campsite and decide Wupatki I will see, but it can wait until tomorrow.
As the sun reclines toward evening and the shadows lengthen, I take the boys for their evening walk. They so enjoy every new camp with all the new smells and places to explore. Humphrey Peak from the north side.
The area is covered in black cinders as there has been volcanic activity in the area as recent as 100 years ago.
On the way back to our camp after our evening walk I spy this cleft in the earth. We walked right past it on the way out, but it’s plainly visible on the way back. I don’t know what’s down that black hole, but for sure I am not going to try and find out!
As the sun sinks farther and evening begins to slide in I admire our view of the San Francisco Mountain Range and Humphrey Peak, the tallest mountain in Arizona at 12,633 feet, from the north side.
Thanks for stopping by 2Dogs. Hugs, Shawna