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Monument Valley

When planning a trip to the desert, Monument Valley almost didn’t make the list.

It was a bit out of the way from other sights and didn’t seem possible to fit into the tight itinerary. But we ended up extending our trip one extra day, which meant an evening could be spent at Monument Valley.

  I barely knew anything about Monument Valley, but when it got added to our trip I was so excited.  It seemed like a place I had to see!

The day that ended at Monument Valley was a long one.  It started off before seven AM at the frozen Grand Canyon, and after a quick frigid morning walk and a hot breakfast, we packed up the car and were off down the road that curved along the Grand Canyon rim.  I didn’t think the drive away from the Grand Canyon would take as long as it did, but stopping at nearly every overlook to admire the canyon views could not be avoided. We continued through the crazy desert landscape of northern Arizona, an area that ended up being my favorite part of the trip. I wished we could have spent more time in some places, but Monument Valley was waiting. 
After many hours of driving, it was nearly five PM and we were both very tired  and nearly crazy from being in the car so long, when we finally arrived at The View Hotel.




Soft Navajo music was playing throughout the hotel lobby, big windows overlooked the towering monuments that were glowing orange in the setting sun. Everything felt so calm and peaceful. I wasn’t sure I had ever been in a place as peaceful as this before.


Every room at The View hotel has a balcony which overlooks the vast rock formations that make up Monument Valley. Except for the lone car traveling occasionally down the dirt road, there wasn’t another soul in sight for as far as the eye could see.



After a little walk around the outside of the hotel, it was time to head to the restaurant inside the hotel for some traditional Navajo food. This was where we first discovered Navajo fry bread. 

Navajo Frybread is delicious, and so was the taco filling that was contained inside mine.











After diner we stared out at the monuments as the icy night arrived.

Monument Valley ending up being on of my favorite stops on the trip despite it barely making the list.

  Some day I hope to return to this place for a longer visit. 




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Cherry Snow


It was late March, and it snowed again. For the fourth time. It rarely snows even once in March.
I was ready for warm weather, but I can never help being excited when I see the fluffy white snow cover all the flowers.



When snow was predicted in the forecast, my camera came to work with me in anticipation. 

The snow finally started after many hours spent glancing up out the window every few minutes.

Many times throughout the day, my camera and I ran outside to take pictures of the cherry tree lined streets, as some of the biggest snowflakes I’d ever seen fell from the sky.













Later that day all the snow melted away when it turned to rain, like it had never even been there.  Winter came back, just for a moment, and then it was finally gone.




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A Frozen Canyon


It seems like the majority of our trips happen in the cold. We froze when we went to Pittsburgh, froze on both trips to Washington DC, froze in NYC at Christmas time. And as we stood, freezing in Detroit this past November, we decided that our next trip would be someplace hot. 

 The Desert.


I planned the trip for the beginning of March, when the average temperatures appeared to be in the 70s. Perfect.

Except they weren’t.

On this trip we learned that it snows in the desert. And that it actually gets quite cold.


We arrived at the Grand Canyon as the sun was setting, and snow covered the ground. I jumped out of the car and ran up the walkway to catch my first glimpse of this infamous gap in the earth. 

Just like with every part of the desert so far, I couldn’t believe what I was looking at. The landscape here is so crazy.




The next morning we walked along the icy path, bundled up in the 20 degree weather. Being careful not to slip on the ice and plummet over the edge.







I didn’t mind that the desert wasn’t hot. I’m glad I got to see what the Grand Canyon looks like with snow.



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A March Winter


It was a winter that was much colder than recent yeas had been. 

The flowers that begun to spring up in January of last year were nowhere in sight until March.

The cold continued, and it snowed more times in March than it had for the entire winter.















On the second day of spring, as I watched the snow covered the flowers, I began to forget what warm days felt like.  But now the snow has finally melted, and the cold has begun to fade away..  Winter might be nearly over.