This is what we hoped to see, however we had no idea how spectacular the remains of these ancient dwellings would be. Below, The White House is the only site that visitors can access without a guide. There is a two and a half mile trail from the rim to the valley floor…but more about that later.
Canyon de Chelly has been inhabited for nearly 5,000 years. It is currently part of the Navajo Nation and serves as the cultural and geographic heart. We were up bright and early for our 9:00 am canyon tour. If you want to really see the canyon and learn about the history, this is the way to go. It was a wild ride!
Access to the canyon is through a seasonal wash. Our tour guide, Francine, picked us up and we were joined by another couple. We all piled into her (aptly named) Ford Expedition. Francine was a fearless driver as she plowed upstream, through the water and across the rocks and into and out of the gullies.
Francine warned us that the three-hour tour would go by quickly, and she was right. We arrived back out of the canyon filled with more facts and figures and anecdotes that any of us could remember. It was a great morning!
Reg and I headed back to our room to grab lunch from our trusty ice chest…then headed right back to the park to try the hike down to The White House ruins. It was time for some exercise!