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Tag: national monuments

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Riding Through The Red Stone

There are some places on this planet that defy description. They are unexpected, ostensively in a different realm. Canyon de Chelly (pronounced “d’shay”), hidden deep within the vast Navajo Nation, is an epic wonder created by shallow seas that advanced and retreated over millions of years, leaving behind deep layers of scarlet stone. Of course, all wonders, natural and unnatural, are best seen from the saddle of your bike, or in my case, a Vampire.

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Wupatki National Monument

Wupatki National Monument, just north of Flagstaff, Arizona, haunts its visitors with ancient Indian ruins, dormant but not dead volcanoes, frozen rivers of lava, and booming vistas of the Painted Desert. In one 35-mile loop, riders can see centuries of human and geologic history. Entering from the north end of the park, the landscape shifts from desert scrub to towers of petrified dunes in rusting shades of red sandstone, to green fir and piñon pine forests, to rolling fields of black volcanic cinder. The high desert is dotted by the stone remains of pueblo settlements whose people mysteriously vanished after centuries of habitation.

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