DSCN9195Leaving the Santa Fe area, we follow the Mother Road (route 66) as far as we can. Then it’s back on I-40 through Albuquerque to Gallup. Then back off of the Interstate onto, of all things, route 666 (now renumbered 491) which takes us due north crossing the entire east side of the Navajo Nation. Crossing into Colorado we find a Passport America Campground in the nice little town of Cortez, which puts us only a short 15 minute drive to Mesa Verde National Park.

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Visiting Mesa Verde has been on our “bucket list” of places to visit, which makes a nice even dozen of National Parks that we have visited since we have become work campers.

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Mesa Verde is a walk back in time from about AD 550 to AD 1300 when the Pueblo people inhabited pit houses and then the cliff dwellings and farmed the land above the cliffs on the mesas. A pretty cool thing to be able to photograph with your modern digital camera.

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After a nice visit to this National Park located in the southwest corner of Colorado, it’s time to move along and keep heading toward our new jobs on the Arizona-Utah border.

Heading west, we follow highway 160 to The Four Corners – another place on our “bucket list” – the only place in the United States that you can stand in four states at the same time – neat.

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After shopping with the Native Americans and checking out their handmade wares and enjoying an Indian Taco for lunch, its time to move along again and continue west onto highway 163 which leads us into some of the most beautiful landscape we have ever seen.

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We even found a new adjective – Spectacular. The only way to describe Monument Valley – Spectacular! When we first approached the valley, we were so impressed, we pulled the RV into a “scenic view” pull-off and just sat and watched the different color schemes play out across the desert, buttes and mesas.

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Spectacular

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What the heck – after a show like that, we just spend the night in the scenic view area, then arise the next morning and head to the Navajo Tribal Park where we pay $4.00 to unhook the Jeep and drive right down into the valley. Awesome! If you ever wanted to experience the John Wayne “old west”, Monument Valley should be your destination.

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As much as we enjoy our visit to this amazing natural wonder, we do have responsibilities, one of which is to arrive at Lake Powell in time to start our new seasonal jobs.

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Work camping has afforded us some time and some money, which is the perfect recipe for exploring this beautiful country.

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