We arrived at Monument Valley’s ‘The View’ campground early in the afternoon. About a third of the pull through spots face cabins. Another third faces the restroom, office and tent campground. The last third has a beautiful view of the monuments. Fortunately, we were there early enough to pick a prime spot.
If you stay at The View campground consider that there is a $20/car fee to enter the Navajo grounds. This is over and above the campground cost, and they state that it is a per day fee.
After parking the RV we jumped in the Jeep and began our self-guided tour through monument valley. The 17 mile scenic drive was very bumpy and dusty, but the beautiful views made it worthwhile.
Sunset from our prime spot was spectacular. Immediately after sunset there was a full moon rising between the monuments.
Charlie had been sick through most of our stay in Page, AZ, to the point where he finally visited the ER room before we departed for Monument Valley. He was starting to feel a little better at Monument Valley but he passed his cold onto me. Therefore, we spent our first full day at Monument Valley resting in the RV. We went out for a short walk and about collapsed with exhaustion. We were miserable.
The next day we were still moving slowly but felt compelled to get out and do some sightseeing. We headed up into Utah. We stopped in Mexican Hat to get a picture of the iconic stone.
We also stopped for breakfast at a great little café on the river: Olde Bridge Grill Café. Next to the café was a beautiful blooming cactus.
From there we went to the Valley of the Gods. We toured along the 17 mile bumpy and sandy road. Thankfully, it was a bit smoother than the one in Monument Valley. Valley of the Gods is considered by some to be a mini Monument Valley. However, we felt that the buttes, towering pinnacles and mesas of Monument Valley were far more spectacular. That’s not to say that Valley of the Gods isn’t beautiful in its own right.
Our next stop was Natural Bridges National Monument. In order to get there we had to climb up this huge mesa, along Hwy 261.
Natural Bridges National Monument is Utah’s first national monument. Within the park there are three majestic natural bridges. We took the loop drive to view the bridges. I think the view from down in the valley would have been very nice. However, neither of us had the energy to take any type of hike, especially considering the higher altitude we were at.
Our final stop for the day was at Utah’s Gooseneck’s State Park. Here you get a view of the San Juan River making numerous tight turns around a canyon landscape that resembles goosenecks.
That wrapped up our stay at Monument Valley. Still feeling under the weather, it was time to move on. We packed up and headed to Santa Fe, NM, with a short stop in Chinle, AZ. More on that later…..