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Friday, July 8, 2011

Painted Desert, Arizona

Several of you mentioned the Painted Desert in THIS blog post.   SO---I thought I'd show you a little more of it today.  The Painted Desert is a 146-square-mile area of badlands located in Northern Arizona (north of Cameron) in the United States.  This area stretches from the Grand Canyon National Park into the Petrified Forest National Park --and runs just north of the Little Colorado and the Puerco Rivers.

The Painted Desert has been described as a multi-colored layer cake.   The variety of hues in the sandstone and mudstone layers of the Chinie Formation is the result of the varying mineral content in the sediments and the rate at which the sediments were laid down.  When sediments are deposited slowly,  oxides of iron and (hematite) aluminum become concentrated in the soil.  These concentrations create the red,  orange and pink colors you see.  During a rapid sediment buildup (such as a flooding event),  oxygen is removed from the soil forming the blue, gray and lavender layers.   This is truly something to behold --- and one needs to see this for him or herself in person if possible.  (I know, Suzanne:  TOO MUCH INFORMATION!!! ha ha)

It was extremely windy the day we were at the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest (I'll talk about the Petrified Forest in another blog) ---but the wind kept it from feeling too hot that day.  George did get a sunburn on his head --since he couldn't wear his hat!!!!! ha

Above is a picture of us at the Painted Desert.  Below are more.




This is the Painted Desert Inn.  It is a National Historic Landmark, and is located at Kachina Point.   The history is interesting to read.  It was originally called the "Stone Tree House" because so much of the original material was from petrified wood. It was built in 1924. Rooms rented from $2-$4 a night.   Then,  the CCC renovated the inn and it was open for about 2 years before World War II.  Later, this inn used to serve as a respite for travelers along historic Route 66. The Petrified Forest is the only National Park in America where historic Route 66 went through at one time.

The inn today opened again in 2006 --after much renovation.  It is now a museum and bookstore --and does not offer food or accommodations now.  When renovating,  they preserved very interesting wall murals done by Hopi Indian artist,  Fred Kabotie.




This is one picture of some of the inside of the bar and eating area at the Painted Desert Inn... When they renovated,  they tried to preserve as much of the history as possible.  We enjoyed touring the inn ---and especially seeing the gorgeous wall murals.




These little adobe houses were near the Painted Desert Inn...   They also have been renovated... I read somewhere that artists-in-residence to the park stay in these neat little homes, when they are chosen to come here.  Wouldn't that be wonderful ---IF I were an artist?????ha



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Now--just sit back,  get another cup of coffee --and just enjoy these next three pictures of the Painted Desert... Click on them to make them larger. They are truly AWESOME!!!!




 We have plenty more pictures of all of this beauty---but I'll stop for today.... Hope you enjoy reading about the history as much as just seeing the pictures...

Have a wonderful weekend.  I will see you on Monday!!!  I will spend part of this weekend  learning the NEW Blogger Dashboard which appeared on my computer Thursday night.....  Everything is DIFFERENT.... Fun --Fun-- Fun...  (They are certainly keeping us on our toes!!!!)

Hugs,