Today was a journey of mountains. Up and down and up and down. Up from the valley of Phoenix and then down to Camp Verde valley and then up to Flagstaff at 7000 feet elevation. Down to Lee's Ferry crossing of the Colorado River and then up to 7700 feet on the north rim of the Grand Canyon at Jacob's Lake. Temperatures were 72F when I left Phoenix, 56F at Flagstaff, 91F along the Navajo desert, and then a cool 72F at the top of the journey. Slowly descending into Utah near Kanab it was a pleasant temperature. This up and down did not prepare me for the next day awakening at 44F. (Tell you about that in the blog for the 10th)
Northern Arizona is filled with vast openness, as big as the sky and wind can make it. Traveling through the Navajo reservation area in mid morning, the shadows and contrasts along the red hued cliffs made for breathtaking moments. It is easy to understand how these areas became sacred - there is so much power in stillness and coloration.
Imagine sheer cliffs going down to the Colorado River and not a way to cross. It's easy with modern bridges, but not back in the 1870's. Lee's ferry has a unique history and some information can be found at wikipedia:
Grand Canyon, Vermillion Cliffs, Bryce Canyon and other great destinations are all located in this area.
Following US89 north, I finally stopped in Richfield, UT, which is nestled in between some mountain ranges which has a small to medium river running within it. It was great motorcycle driving territory with hundreds and hundreds of twisty turns
Here are some more pics from this photographic day.