Left before 7AM in a light rain. Drove the 19 miles or so to Holbrook, AZ where I got gas for the VRRV and breakfast at McD's.
A short hop on eastbound I-40 and then it was state and Navajo reservation roads. Some sections of the reservation roads were quite uneven at times, so I had to slow the VRRV down from 55 to 50 mph to prevent her from bouncing all over!
Luckily, traffic was light so the speeders got past me easily enough, and disappeared from sight as they went way above the speed limit.
Got to the the Cottonwood Campground run by the Park Service. The Canyon de Chelly is a National Monument located within tribal lands so a different situation from the usual monument/park. Still, there were plenty of spaces, level paved sites and not much else. Still, it's only $14/night and no much in the way of choices otherwise.
By 2PM I was all set up, and though it was still spitting rain and the occasional small bit of hail; I geared up and rode Scarlett to check out the South Rim Drive for the canyon.
Tsegi Overlook Pano
Junction Overlook view
Since the canyon is on Tribal Lands, the farms you see at the bottom of the canyon belong to tribe members. What a view they must have.
Closer looks at Junction Overlook:
The view from Junction Overlook
The leftmost(shortest) rock formation is apparently known
as the Sliding House
Spider Rock. Named for a figure in Navajo Lore:
A cool feature I've not seen before in other areas where there's distant cliff dwellings:
You peer through the tube and that allows you to spot the distant cliff dwellings on the other side of the canyon. Here's some zoom shots, must remember to use the tripod next time.
can you see the dwellings along the fissure?
Look along the fissure, above the vegetation
Fissure near the top...
Anyways, I thought it was pretty cool and handy how they pointed out the dwellings for us tourists. I don't think I would have spotted them without a lot more effort and some luck.
Spider Rock was the last overlook so I retraced my route back to the campground. Of course, as I left the South Rim behind, the sun came out! Oh well, there's always tomorrow. The forecast is for no rain, but partly cloudy and temperatures only in the low 60s.
If you didn't already, check out my post on the Petrified Forest National Park, it's the posting before this one.