Whalechaser's Musings

No Matter Where You Go...
There You Are
Make the Best of It

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Backpacking in Canyon de Chelly, Arizona

Rather than get all caught up in the details of week-long trip I thought I would post the pictures in sequence as the trip unfolded and describe the events as they happened. We started at the top of the canyon...and I didn't take four steps when I found this little horned toad...look closely he really blends in with the background

(Click on any picture to have it enlarged for a better view.)

We were actually walking across one of the reservation residents' property and I grabbed a quick picture of this outhouse...this of course was way before I knew that I would be using similar facilities for the week. Actually, the ones I used did not have a roof; so mine were more rustic!
Seriously, this is the descent into the canyon.
After we arrived at camp, we had the chance to rest a bit before dinner. This grasshopper was making his way up my chair and ultimately onto my camera before I had to have serious words with him!
More beautiful views on the canyon floor.
Some of the many Anasazi ruins. that we saw during the week
It rained on us only once during the trip and I thought these herded tourists in the truck with the ponchos looked particularly sorry...(we of course looked MUCH worse when it was finally over!)
I thought this flower was so pretty -- then found out that everything about this plant (flower, leaves and roots) is poisonous.
Catherine, a native Navajo who lives in the canyon demonstrates the Navajo weaving techniques. She gets the wool from her sheep and works on from there! Here she is combing the wool to remove dirt and separate the fibers.
Taking the clean wool and making it into thread for dyeing and then weaving
Here she is showing the weaving techniques...
The next day it was on to yet another canyon...this time up and over the top.
Even the open road can be troublesome at times.
This was by far the most difficult hike (and the most beautiful) Why is that?
Once you get to the top there is no other way to go but down...
We all took turns at cooking. This particular day I was in charge of cooking breakfast. Oatmeal was the cereal of the day. You can tell by the reaction of my fellow hiker that it was...well...different!
A well deserved rest at the end of a long day.
More Anasazi ruins.
I was also in charge of helping with dinner. Navajo fry-bread was the order of the day. Here my helpmates were ready to dig in...but where is the bread?
A little instruction in the proper forming of the circle of dough and then...
this is what it looks like when cooked. Now on to the toppings!
Here's my masterpiece!
Some battle scars from the day.
Another hike and another beautiful view. This is Window Arch.
We all got pretty good at fording streams!
Our final destination in the canyon...Spider Rock.
More flowers for me before we made our ascent out of the canyon.
Believe it or not you are looking at the way out of the canyon. There is a trail that takes us up and has many switchbacks and crossovers, but it does ultimately get us out. It was a very strenuous hike but beautiful too.
Here we look down on the same view!

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