Gallup, New Mexico to Monument Valley, Utah 3/24/2014

MARCH 24, 2014 (Monday)

 

Spring is here! The weather has been beautiful and looks like it will continue for awhile.

Michael and I got up around 8:00 AM and went down to the registration area to have their continental breakfast. Kind of awkward in that there was only seating for about six people and there were many more waiting to eat, get their food, or sit down. Michael and I ended up getting our coffee and food and eating it at the counter. We had to keep moving our food items so other people could get their breakfast.  (We took a waffle and juice up to the room for Lexi.)

We left around 9:30 AM – destination Monument Valley, Utah. It’s about a 200 mile drive but we wanted to do little detours to Ganado and Canyon De Chelly. (Kind of a walk down memory lane for Michael – and him telling the stories about when he lived there for us.) We stopped in Gallup at the Safeway to get a couple of items, and then gas at the Giant Gas Station close to the Safeway ($3.36 a gallon).

A few things and a little cash.

A few things and a little cash.

IMG_3767

Ganado prices.  Good thing we filled up in Gallup.

Ganado prices. Good thing we filled up in Gallup.

There were several small fires.  We wondered who or what was starting them.

There were several small fires. We wondered who or what was starting them.

The road was shut down.

The road was shut down.

We drove through Ganado, and then stopped to go to the bathroom. Michael said he didn’t recognize much anymore. I wanted to go see the school he used to teach at, but he wasn’t sure where it was anymore. After we had stopped to go to the bathroom, we were driving out of town and saw the road was blocked by the Ganado Fire Department. They were busily putting out a small fire on the side of the road. We also saw where they had put out two or three other fires. Looked like someone was driving along starting fires. Stupid. Anyway, the Ganado Fire Department did a great job and we only had about a ten minute wait while they doused everything to make sure it was safe.

The next stop was Canyon De Chelly, outside of Chinle, Arizona. What a beautiful canyon. We drove to several of the overlooks, and even walked down a couple to the viewing areas. Gorgeous! We got to see a few of the cave dwellings in the cliffs. I love those. I could live in one (if it had a bathroom, running water, TV, internet and an elevator). We thought we’d see more cave dwellings at the Spider Rock Overlook, but the White House Overlook homes were easier to see and make out. Michael and I decided that we’re going to come back and do the hike. First we need to get in shape. At some of the parking areas they had Native American (Navajo) vendors selling their artwork. They were very friendly and were eager to tell their stories and share what their symbols were all about. Loved seeing them actively making their wares while we were looking/shopping.

Hogan.

Hogan.

Interior.

Interior.

Interior ceiling.

Interior ceiling.

IMG_3793

 

Beautiful Canyon with farming in the bottom.

Beautiful Canyon with farming in the bottom.

Farm

Farm

IMG_6050

Navajo artist.

Navajo artist.

You are on your own.

You are on your own.

 

I admire the life clinging to rocks.

I admire the life clinging to rocks.

IMG_6064

IMG_6068

IMG_6069

Pretty woman.

Pretty woman looking through the aiming tubes.

IMG_6077

IMG_6078

IMG_6092

IMG_6094

Hikers.

Hikers.

Ruins, Anasazi.

Ruins, Anasazi.

IMG_6109

IMG_6112

We stopped in Chinle, Arizona for lunch. The choices were either Subway or a Burger King. We opted for the Burger King because it looked busier. Took awhile but we got our food and went on our merry way to Monument Valley. The GPS took us a weird way but it was fun because the road didn’t have a lot of vehicles and there were many horses, mules, cows, and sheep just munching or standing alongside the road.

IMG_3873

Edie and Lex wanted to adopt this one.

Edie and Lex wanted to adopt this one.

I had to tell Edie about the Utube video of the donkey killing the lion.

I had to tell Edie about the Utube video of the donkey killing the lion.

Pretty drive.

Pretty drive.

The drive to our hotel (Goulding Lodge and Tours) was beautiful, especially going over the Monument Valley Pass and then down into the valley. So many formations. We started naming them – the Indian, the mohawk, the pyramid;  just too many. We are going to do more exploring tomorrow before we head back down to Flagstaff, Arizona.

IMG_3919

IMG_3922

IMG_3932IMG_3936

Wanted to mention that we thought we were going to be staying with our Aunt and Uncle in Oklahoma for a few days but she still isn’t feeling up to company so we have been booking hotels and taking a slow route to Las Vegas. I have been booking the hotels mostly through Booking.com because it lets us change our plans without charging us. So far everything has been okay. I actually prefer using Priceline.com, but with 3 of us, they can’t guarantee two beds. Once we get Lexi settled, we’ll probably go back to using Priceline.com.

IMG_6128

 

IMG_6133

 

IMG_6143

We got to the Goulding Lodge around 4:00 PM. It’s in a lovely setting at the base of a mountain. Our “home” was a little ways away but it’s quite lovely – a two bedroom. Lexi was thrilled. It’s a little apartment. The only thing it doesn’t have is a washer and dryer. Oh well. When we get to Las Vegas we’re hopeful we’ll have a washer/dryer. Michael and I have decided that we want to come back here and explore more. It’s just too much to see in one day.

IMG_6140

Check in.

Check in.

Copper trim, Edie's favorite.

Copper trim, Edie’s favorite.

Window rock in the making.

Window rock in the making.

IMG_3984

Patio door area.

Patio door area.

Kitchen.

Kitchen.

Lex's room.

Lex’s room.

Our room.

Our room.

The bathroom.

The bathroom.

Nice wall art.

Nice wall art.

Living room.

Living room.

Ours was the bottom right.

Ours was the bottom right.

Later in the evening we went to dinner at the Stagecoach Restaurant.  Before we went in to dinner, we walked around and saw the cabin where John Wayne’s office was in “She Wore a Yellow Ribbon.”  Too fun.  There was also an old stagecoach and other old artifacts.

Stagecoach restaurant.

Stagecoach restaurant.

From the movie. they say unchanged, but I think the pavement is new since the movie.

From the movie. they say unchanged, but I think the pavement is new since the movie.

IMG_4007

Lots of old photos from the actual set.

Lots of old photos from the actual set.

I think the wrong cut out.

I think the wrong cut out.

Makes me want to yell, "Action".

Makes me want to yell, “Action”.

IMG_4018

Was nice to see.  When we were eating dinner someone would ring the dinner bell, just like in the old days.  The food in the restaurant was good but pricey, probably because there really isn’t much around.  After that we went to the gift shop and looked around.  The Goulding Lodge is a nice place and has lots to see and do on its premises.

$65. in the gift shop and $85 at a roadside place outside the park.

$65. in the gift shop and $85 at a roadside place outside the park.

Edie and Lex were brave and tried the prickly pear tea.  I took a taste and was glad I stuck with water.

Edie and Lex were brave and tried the prickly pear tea. I took a taste and was glad I stuck with water.

Lex and I had the all you can eat soup and salad bar.

Lex and I had the all you can eat soup and salad bar.

Chicken gumbo was the soup of the day.

Chicken gumbo was the soup of the day.

We had Navajo fry bread with honey as an appetizer.

We had Navajo fry bread with honey as an appetizer.

Edie had a charbroiled chicken.  I got most of the chicken.

Edie had a charbroiled chicken. I got most of the chicken.

Lex had the chocolate decadence.  She shared some and it was great.

Lex had the chocolate decadence. She shared some and it was great.

Edie and I split a slice of cherry pie a la mode, and called it medicinal for my gout.

Edie and I split a slice of cherry pie a la mode, and called it medicinal for my gout.

IMG_4037

IMG_4044

Time to settle in for the night.

Time to settle in for the night.

Anyway, that was our day. Hope yours was great!

 

Posted in Uncategorized