Day 115. Thursday, 22nd August. From Desert View, Grand Canyon, Arizona to Kenab, Utah.

I am in big trouble, as I am behind with the blog. Dennis wants to write today’s and I haven’t started yesterday’s yet. Last night I spent all evening organising flights and making arrangements for us to go back to the UK for 2 weeks in the middle of September.

Yesterday morning we decided we would have one last look at the Grand Canyon. We had been staying at Desert View campsite for 2 nights, but had not looked at the view point there. It was a good job we did. I think it was one of the best views of the entire canyon. You could clearly see the Colorado river. The highlight, however, was the Desert View Watch Tower. It was built in 1932 but in an unusual, traditional style. The interior has a spiral staircase winding up four floors, with a viewing platform. The interior was decorated with Native American art. It was very attractive.

There had been a tragedy here in 1956 when TWA Super Constellation and a United Airlines DC-7 collided at 21,000 ft and crashed into the Canyon. This led to the creation of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

For the rest of the day we were driving through Navajo territory. 27,000 square miles touching four states. Utah, Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado. Lonely Planet says something about the Navajo Territory having it’s own time zone. We seem to have lost another hour somewhere, somehow.

The drive took us through Vermillion Cliffs National Monument and Marble Canyon. Beautiful red cliffs. Very arid and hot with a strong, heated wind. We stopped to view the Colorado River from the Navajo Bridge. There are actually 2 identical bridges. The first built in 1927/8, which is now the walking bridge and the second, stronger bridge, built to replace it in 1994. A Californian Condor had been spotted near the bridge earlier the day. They are very rare, almost becoming extinct. Reduced to only 22 birds, a preservation programme has restored the number to over 400.

Climbing from 5000 ft to over 8000, the scenery changed from dry desert to pine forests. We snaked our way up to this level and then back down again to dry conditions. Deciding to stop early before we reached Zion National Park, we found a very nice RV/campsite in Kanab. Kanab proved to be a very nice, quite lively little place.

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