Monument Valley

Monument Valley is a unique geological entity located in the northeast of Arizona and the southeast of Utah, along the state border, on the territory of the Navajo Indian tribe, one of the national symbols of the United States. The full name of the park is – Navajo Park « Monument Valley », in fact – it is an analogue of the national park, with the only difference being not managed by the federal government, but owned by the Navajo Indians.

Monument Valley

Monument Valley is an elevated plain that is part of the Colorado plateau. The upper layer of this plain, consisting of soft sedimentary rocks, was completely destroyed, but here and there the bizarre shape of the rock-stans, 12 to 300 meters high, rise above the smooth desert surface, folded from a more solid and non-windable sandstone. These remains are called monuments, many of them have their own names. The famous arch « Wind ear » and « Castle » - a massive 300-meter « giant », crowned with teeth, look especially impressive. Opposite each other are « East Mittens » and « West Mittens » - two identical stone blocks with columns sticking out on the side resembling thumbs of mittens. Nearby are « Three nuns », over which the 245-meter « Resident » dominates. Nature turned other blocks into a likeness of giant mushrooms, cacti and petrified trees. Thanks to the flat topography, most of the stone statues are convenient to inspect from the windows of the car. But if a traveler dares to climb to the top of one of the monoliths, he will be able to fully enjoy his stay in the fantastic world, studying « Martian landscapes » from a bird's eye view.

Today, Monument Valley is considered one of the most famous landscapes in the United States. But that was not always the case. In the 1920 –s, businessman Harry Gaulding settled in the region and established a small company. The company did not bring profit, but its owner believed that the local beauties would sooner or later charm tourists, and « the golden age » would come. However, for 10 years the business of the merchant did not go uphill. In 1937, learning that the director John Ford was looking for a film set for a new film, Harry went to Hollywood, taking with him photographs of the Monument Valley. Ford fell in love with these « Martian landscapes » at first sight, and Harry soon got rich. So there was a western « Stagecoach ». Today, on the site of a seedy trading office, the Harry's Heirs « Gouldings Lodge » are located, from the balconies of which stunning views of red rocks open. After the release of the films « My dear Clementine », « Once in the Wild West », « Careless rider », « Forrest Gump » and others. The valley of monuments became famous throughout the world. Among the bright red desert with flat mountains of bizarre forms, western fans feel at home. For tourists who are not passionate about cinema, these landscapes are also well acquainted in cigarette advertising « Marlboro ».

Monument Valley

South of the Monument Valley, in the Peynted Desert, is the largest fossil petrified forest of all known on the planet. Stone trees, with preserved bark, branches and annual rings, also saw the Mesozoic era, when dinosaurs roamed the mighty coniferous forests here. On the giant faults, up to 2 meters in the diameter of the trunks, you can see crystals of pink amethyst, black morion, milk-white quartz, which replaced rotten wood during the crystallization process.

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Monument Valley - geographical coordinates
Latitude: 36.983333
Longitude: -110.1


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