Sun Valley, AZ
First welcome to John and Linda who have stopped by to visit our blog. Glad to see you here.
What a windy day it is. This morning we drove about 15 miles east of the campground to the Petrified Forest National Park. After visiting the Visitor Center and watching a short movie, we set off on the 28 mile drive.
The drive took us through some beautiful, awesome scenery of the Painted Desert.
We stopped at the Painted Desert Inn that houses cultural history exhibits.
There are several hand-painted murals inside the building. These were painted by a Hopi artist. The building was renovated by the CCC in the 1930's.
The park encompasses land that once was part of historic Route 66. As such, there were several relics left along the road to rust. What once was Route 66, is now dirt and grasses. You can see the old telephone lines running along the left.
We took a couple of short walks, fighting the wind each time. One of them was to the Puerco Pueblo. It is a partially stabilized 100-room pueblo built about 1250 and may have housed nearly 1,200 people.
In several areas of the park are petroglyphs, ancient etchings in stone.
One area has formations that are cone shaped of layered iron, carbon, manganese and other minerals. Because of their cone shape, they are called Tepees.
And then the petrified wood. It ranges from small pieces to almost entire trees laid out along the ground. Partial trees can be seen peeking out from rocks and soil. It is illegal to take any of the wood. Sadly about one ton of petrified wood is removed from the park EVERY MONTH! Why people do this is hard to say. There is wood for sale and even given away throughout the surrounding towns. No reason to rob one of our National Parks.
We spent over 3 hours in the park. We were hungry! Coming out of the park we headed to Holbrook, about 19 miles away. We decided Mexican food sounded good.
This small restaurant served good Mexican food and was decorated with lots of old and interesting stuff.
We both decided on the combination dinner. After devouring two baskets of hot chips and fresh made salsa, we were each presented with one of these:
And we did eat MOST of it.
We first entered Arizona on January 8. Tomorrow we leave. Next stop for a few days is New Mexico.