Monument Valley – May 23 & 24

Pardon the lateness of my postings. It is really hard keeping up a blog when a) you rarely have any significant internet/data signal and b) you’re busy doing things.

Friday, May 23
We drove from Kaibab National Forest just outside the North Rim of the Grand Canyon to Goulding’s at Monument Valley on the Arizona-Utah border.

Even though it was the Friday of the Memorial Day weekend, Jon had been able to make reservations for the campground at Goulding’s.
Goulding’s at Monument Valley

We started out our journey with Fred & Denise Cook, but they went ahead. We stopped a few times & made a detour to Navajo National Monument, a US Park Service Visitor Center in the Navajo Nation.
Navajo National Monument

Jon & I were glad that Fred & Denise arrived at the campground first since the campground had put us in the tent area. Fred was able to use his considerable skills to find an place on the site for both of us to camp.

Once we set up, we all took the free shuttle to Goulding’s Lodge. Fred & Denise had never been to the area. Jon & I have stayed at Goulding’s Lodge several times and always enjoyed it. The location and history alone makes it worth a visit.


The John Ford western movies starring John Wayne were filmed at Monument Valley because of the Gouldings. There is a museum of the history of the Goulding’s Trading Post and includes memorabilia from all of the movies shot in Monument Valley and they have the building used in the John Wayne movie “She Wore A Yellow Ribbon”. We ate dinner at the restaurant which is a great place to try Navajo Fry Bread.


This was followed by shopping. They, of course, have an exceptional shop of Native American goods.

After a good night’s sleep and saying good-bye to Fred & Denise, Jon & I went out on Goulding’s Deluxe Tour of Monument Valley. We had driven the loop a number of times, but with this tour, we would go to new places. It started with a visit to a Female Hogan and a demonstration of fiber arts by a Navajo woman.


We covered the usual Monument Valley loop.




We fortunately saw Fred & Denise while we were there. It was a great chance to say good-bye one more time.

After the loop, we stopped to view a feature called Sleeping Dragon. I wish the photos did it justice, because it really did look like a sleeping dragon.


We also saw several natural bridges/openings in the rock.





And saw other features from new perspectives.


All in all, it was a great time.


Categories: Spring 2014 | 1 Comment

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One thought on “Monument Valley – May 23 & 24

  1. Crash Eddy Downing

    In our “big” western tour with sons circa 1975, we missed Monument Valley. Your photos and description make me wish we hadn’t. We worked as Sierra Club volunteers in NYC past week. Now on our way to Boston to visit a buddy from Raleigh there for chemo treatments of Hodgkins Lymphoma. He’s doing well.

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