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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Off to the Grand Canyon - 2014 - Day 2

Today, after a stop at the Blue Beacon Truck Wash in Gallup, NM, it was on to the Painted Desert/Petrified Forest. Most reviews that I had seen online indicated a couple hours were all that were needed. After stopping at the visitor center, unhooking the Jeep, we were off on a four hour 20+ mile trek through first the Painted Desert and then the Petrified Forest. We had purchased a driving guided tour CD that we loaded into the Jeep’s stereo and listened to along the way. This was definitely a good investment. The Painted Desert is where we started,

the colors are incredible the reds to grays with the green thrown in made for some beautiful landscapes.
As we headed into the Petrified Forest, the terrain and colors did not change much.

There were several stops along the way. Like this petrified log, known as Agate Bridge, 
that was used to cross this small arroyo, after the rains had washed the ground out from underneath it.
This 110 foot long stone tree resisted erosion from the waters as the softer ground and stone around it washed away. After many years, in order to preserve it, the concrete beam was added underneath to support it.

This project was completed in 1917. Other items found by explorers were Indian Petroglyphs on the flat surfaces of the rock.

Of course railroads played an important role in the development of this western country
and there are many references to Fred Harvey creator of the Harvey Houses along the path of the Santa Fe Railroad.

Many of the view points offered the chance to wander into the landscape deeper, like this one trail down into a beautiful canyon.

Many interestingly shaped Hoodoos could be seen from the road

something that we were not expecting to see.

And of course being the Petrified Forest, there was a lot of petrified wood.

Illegal to remove from this National Monument, it is sold in the gift shop and in stores in a wide vicinity. After hooking up the Jeep and having a quick lunch it was on the road to the destination for the day, Williams, AZ.

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