Dinosaur Tracks

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Today we left Arizona, the Grand Canyon is now just a memory.

One thing that really struck me about the area surrounding the Grand Canyon was how green it was.  The area is hot but it must get a lot of precipitation because the hills and valleys are just covered with greenery.  There are some times when driving on the park roads where if I didn’t know I was at the Grand Canyon I could easily believe I was somewhere along the Oregon Coast.

The night we arrived into the park we did see lightning as we drove in, and yesterday we saw clouds dropping rain somewhere, but we never got wet ourselves.

We left early-ish, at 7:20 and started making our way towards a one-night stay in Moab, Utah on our way eventually to Mt. Rushmore.

Much of the drive once we left the National Park was through the Navajo Indian Reservation, and there were some interesting geological features that we didn’t think to photograph. There are these huge mounds, for example, that look like gravel piles, but there’s nothing to suggest they are actually piles of gravel moved from somewhere else. They stand in stark contrast to the pervasive red rock that is just about everywhere else.

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Just before Tuba City, AZ we came across signs advertising Dinosaur Tracks. We couldn’t pass it by without stopping.

We were guided by a local Navajo girl who explained the tracks were made by Raptors, Allosaurus, Pteradactyls and a fourth one I can’t remember.

There were also fossilized bones, a claw and lots of dino droppings.

In addition to offering tours of the footprints there were also women selling locally-made jewelry and other trinkets.  The place had the kind of grim sadness of a lot of the roadside Indian merchants.  The stands are rickety and quite spare, you can sense the desperation of the people.  We gave the tourguide a “donation” and also bought some bracelets.

It was a worthwhile stop, very fun to see dinosaur artifacts out in the wild.

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