We decided to head to Monument Valley as part of a trip that included the Grand Canyon. It certainly was an amazing trip, and Monument Valley was surprisingly amazing. This trip had a whole adventure aspect to it, in order to keep costs low was the main reason. We opted for camping (this backfired on us when it started storming in the Canyon!).
On our way to Monument Valley, we stopped in Sedona and surrounding areas for some sightseeing, underestimating the time it would take for us to head up to Monument Valley. Needless to say, we arrived at Monument Valley on the cusp of darkness. We had a whole plan with our food – like us South African like to do – braai. Or for the North American people, barbeque. But, when we arrived, we were informed that fires were not permitted. Ooooops. So we had to scurry around and find something with which we could make food.
I can’t remember what we ended up eating that night, only that we basically had to set up camp in the dark. We drove around for a long time trying to find some type of gas stove and equipment that we could use for food. This park is operated by the Navajo tribe, and you should not expect that they are well equipped for tourists (which is sad because this place has huge potential to be something amazing!).
We spent the night looking at the stars, recounting stories and catching up. It was sooooo beautiful, and a night that will stay with me for a long time!
The next morning we woke up to what was a truly beautiful scene!! The sun just rising on the horizon, and everything still chilly from the night before. Those buttes, in all their simplicity, were truly breathtaking.
That morning we headed out for a tour of Mystery Valley – I will post some photos of this soon. The tour lasted just over 3 hours if I remember correctly, but more on this soon. When we arrived back at the camp site, it was blazing hot! We opted to do the Valley Drive – a 17 mile loop that has 11 scenic points. The trail was quite busy, but the lookouts were pretty cool, I would definitely recommend doing that if you are spending some time in the Valley.
After our scenic drive, me and hubby decided to go and have a drink overlooking the buttes, while our friend decided to hike the loop around the West Mitten Butte. We spent the rest of the afternoon lazing around, browsing the huge curio shop and admiring the sunset view of the buttes (which is my personal favourite!).
The next morning we packed up camp, made a yummy camping breakfast, enjoyed the last couple views of the majestic buttes, and headed off to the Grand Canyon!!