Canyon du Chelly

The canyonlands of the American Southwest provide some spectacular vistas. One of my favorites is Canyon de Chelly National Monument in extreme northeast Arizona. Pronounced: can-yen duh shay. The monument actually has three interconnected canyons: de Chelly, del Muerto, and Monument. 

Native Americans of various tribes have inhabited these canyons for over 4,000 years. Today the monument lies entirely in the Navajo Nation; Navajo families live in the canyons. They farm and raise livestock there.  

The canyons extend for miles, and one picture cannot possibly convey the magnificence of the entire canyon system. You can view the canyons from the rim on your own, as I did when I took this photo in 2010. But travel on the floor of the canyon is restricted; you must have a guide. The only exception is the trail to the cliff dwelling known as the White House Ruin. 

http://www.nps.gov/cach/index.htm

This is Spider Rock (on the left) in Canyon de Chelly National Monument in extreme northeast Arizona. It is a dual sandstone column rising 750 feet from the canyon floor. It is much photographed and has appeared in commercials. I placed the Rock to the side in the photo because the canyons themselves are so striking. 

http://www.nps.gov/cach/index.htm