Saturday, May 2, 2015

Flagstaff, Arizona - Walnut Canyon National Monument

Dwellings sheltered by overhanging cliffs were home to Walnut Canyon's only permanent inhabitants more than 800 years ago.  The people are today known as Sinagua (Spanish for "without water"). [Source: Park brochure]

There is a Visitor's Center and a $5 entrance fee.  The top portion of the main view point is accessible, and the hiking pathway leads to a wonderful close-up view, complete with about 240 steps.

This is the panoramic from the Visitor's Center.

 San Francisco peaks with snow capped tops.

There is a "Rim Trail" that has a nice paved pathway and is accessible.  The walk to the farthest lookout point is about 1/4 mile.
 This is from the first lookout point:
 You can see the hiking path in the center to the left of the large rock formation.
 A view of the surrounding ponderosa forest.
 Scattered dead trees add to the view.

 Arizona wild flowers abound.
 Seating benches are placed along the path.

 There are informational signs along the way identifying the plants.  I liked this one because the curly grasses caught my eye.  Blue Grama: "The root of the "curled up grass" is used in Navajo Life Medicines, concoctions of several plant parts known to have special healing powers.  Stems can be fill in Hopi coiled baskets.  But the most widespread duty has been as a hair brush, made from the cut ends of a bundle of stems.  The soft ends served as a broom."

 Other flowers dotted the landscape.

 A view of one of the walls,  You can see the walkway and terraced home areas.

The panoramic from the third viewpoint:

 I liked these big boulders.  The photo is level...the land is not!

I took some panoramic shots so that you could see the entire view.

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