4/23/15 Thursday in Sun Valley, AZ (Crystal Forest Gift Museum & Gift Shop-dry camping)
The batteries were at 12.4 volts when we got up, so that was good. The refrigerator had only warmed to 40.9 degrees. Nice to know. We ran the generator from 7 until 9 to get everything in good shape before we left to explore the park.
John cleaned the jacks per our new instructions this morning, since the air was calm, using carburetor/brake cleaning fluid. Then he retracted them. All came up in 3 minutes! Hooray!! Off to see the Petrified Forest at 9:30.
We drove right past the first 3 sites/walks before we realized that they were there. We figured we’d just get them when we returned at the end of the day. As it happened I got talking with my sister as we were going up the road. I found out they were heading for Flagstaff today. We realized that we’d be up to the North end of park when they would be drawing near to that exit, so we made plans to meet at that Visitor Center around 3.
Jasper Forest-where more petrified wood resides (in a higher concentration) than anywhere else.
Note the concrete form below the petrified bridge. It was poured about a 100 years ago. Still, the rushing water below will someday cause our petrified log to fall.
Blue Mesa (below), considered badlands. Note logs on the ridge still eroding from the sandstone. As the harder petrified wood protects the sedimentary rock beneath, erosion forms pedestals beneath the fossil trunks. “The colorful bands of the Chinle Formation represent ancient soil horizons. While the red, blue and green layers generally contain the same amount of iron and manganese, differences in color depend on the position of the groundwater table when the ancient soils were formed…”
Blue Mesa Trail
We followed a long and, for a while, very steep trail, down into the mesa. Fascinating and well worth our efforts.
Puerco Pueblo. The first image is a kiva (for underground storage and ceremonies), the second is the foundations of some of their pueblos (about 100 all together). The next is a replica of one of the pueblos of an ancestral Pueblo people. There was even a summer solstice marker here (the next images). Then more petroglyphs that were here as well.
Painted Desert Inn
We met up with Lynn/Gene at 3:30, traveling together in our car to see the Painted Desert part of the park.
I took more pictures of the Painted Desert, as we looked at it together.
It had gotten very windy, so they were glad to get back to their rental car and continue on to Flagstaff.
Last images on our way home.
We left for our campground by 5, arriving at 5:42, to have our leftover chili supper again. We spent the rest of our night running the generator and visiting with Diane/Dennis until we went to bed at 9. We turned the generator off (manual) as well as the fridge.