Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Arizona and the Navajo tribe

I have to write a short post about the drive from the Grand Canyon to Zion National Park. We are leaving Zion today and heading to Bryce (both in Utah) but since I haven’t had any internet connection, I am behind with the blog posts. Hopefully I will catch up soon. We have some amazing photos from Zion to go with my next blog post.

Anyway, the drive through Arizona to Utah was as beautiful as any drive we have made so far. Vast orange colored landscapes, filled with huge rocks and canyons. The scenery was breath taking. We were driving through a huge Indian Reservation, that covered hundreds of miles. At various stops along the road were little Indian craft stalls selling jewelry, pottery, dream catchers etc. We drove past a huge canyon in the ground. I’m not sure if it was the end of the Grand Canyon, or something entirely separate. But the Indian Reservation had opened up a little area to stop and view the canyon. To get to the canyon we had to walk through Indian craft market stalls. I was a bit dubious about that and felt I was being conned into making purchases just to see the view, but I was wrong.

It was nice to see the Indian stalls being run by actual Indians. All through America we have gone into Native American gift shops just to find out they are run by people who have nothing to do with Indian heritage at all. I always felt that they were making money out of the people whose land they stole. But here the stalls were owned by native Indians, from the tribe of Navajo. The people sat and made their items whilst tourists browsed past. They never once tried to sell us anything or pressured us to buy anything. So I felt fine to take my time looking, and we bought a few gifts for family members and school friends. We all really enjoyed listening to the native Indian language too. It sounds so mystical! (Later on we stopped at Walmart and were one of the only non-Indian shoppers there).

We ended up sleeping overnight at Lake Powell as the drive to Zion was too far. At Lake Powell, like Lake Mead, there is a large dam which we were able to drive over. The Lake Powell area runs on the border of Arizona and Utah, and is beautiful. However, camping there cost an arm and a leg, so we only stayed one night, despite the scenic beauty.
Hopefully, I will be back soon with my blog post about Zion National Park. In the mean time if we are out of range for phone and email, we are at Bryce National Park in Utah.

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