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  1. #171
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Posts
    594

    Default Here Come the Clues:

    So, let's say you're out there taking the Grand Tour, and you've already seen practically everything. Some of it's worth seeing twice, but surely there must be something new under the sun. Either way, you'll have to make a decision or two when you get to this place:



    You've got lots of choices at this point. You decide you don't want to go here again:



    And you don't want to go here again, either:



    So you head off in the general direction of this place:



    Until you come to another crossroads, in a town that reminds you of halftime at your High School football games, even though there's not a marching band in sight. You change your mind, and you bear right at the fork, driving, instead, toward this place:



    Before you get there, you see Rick's Jeep parked by a dirt road with a cattle guard. He waves you down, and points to a thing sticking up above the hill just behind him. And he asks you--though you're not really sure if it's a literal question, or more rhetorical:



    Where am I?

  2. #172
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,477

    Default A working thang

    Well, I know.... (but then I edited the manuscript....)

    The real question about that thang -- is it still performing as once intended?

    I like how this format has morphed into more a road trip theme!

  3. #173
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,944

    Default

    Took some Googling after I picked up on the Tuba City clue, but I believe that's Coal Mine Canyon. No idea why the windmill matters.

  4. #174
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Posts
    594

    Default Look for the Windmill

    Quote Originally Posted by glc View Post
    Took some Googling after I picked up on the Tuba City clue, but I believe that's Coal Mine Canyon. No idea why the windmill matters.
    Good job, George; Coal Mine Canyon is the answer.

    This is not what you'd call a well-known attraction. The canyon itself is on the Hopi Reservation, but the rim, which includes the best viewpoints, is on the Navajo Reservation. The spot where most people go is very close to the highway, but because it's tribal land, away from the public right-of-way, you have to purchase a permit (available at the Visitors Center in Cameron) just to drive out to it. There's no infrastructure, no signage, no restrooms. Just a couple of concrete picnic tables, and a completely outrageous view of this amazing canyon that most people, including most Arizona residents, have never heard of. It's definitely worth the little bit of trouble, if only for the bragging rights. (And the photo op.)

    The windmill is important because of the aforementioned lack of signage: you look for the windmill (the only visible windmill for miles around), so you'll know which dirt road you're supposed to turn on, about 15 miles east of Tuba City. Coal Mine Canyon is part of Scenic Side Trip #15, which is a very cool route through the heart of the Hopi mesas, where the Hopi people have made their home for more than a thousand years.

  5. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Quinn View Post
    Good job, George; Coal Mine Canyon is the answer.

    This is not what you'd call a well-known attraction. The canyon itself is on the Hopi Reservation, but the rim, which includes the best viewpoints, is on the Navajo Reservation. The spot where most people go is very close to the highway, but because it's tribal land, away from the public right-of-way, you have to purchase a permit (available at the Visitors Center in Cameron) just to drive out to it. There's no infrastructure, no signage, no restrooms. Just a couple of concrete picnic tables, and a completely outrageous view of this amazing canyon that most people, including most Arizona residents, have never heard of. It's definitely worth the little bit of trouble, if only for the bragging rights. (And the photo op.)

    The windmill is important because of the aforementioned lack of signage: you look for the windmill (the only visible windmill for miles around), so you'll know which dirt road you're supposed to turn on, about 15 miles east of Tuba City. Coal Mine Canyon is part of Scenic Side Trip #15, which is a very cool route through the heart of the Hopi mesas, where the Hopi people have made their home for more than a thousand years.
    Good to know! I recognized Cameron on Hwy 89, the Desert View Watchtower at the Grand Canyon, Lake Powell and Monument Valley. We've traveled though Tuba City many times over the years and we've even traveled between Tuba City and Hubbell Trading Post on Hwy 264 twice but didn't know about Coal Mine Canyon.

    Utahtea

  6. #176
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    5,473

    Default

    Coming back to this thread late again ... sorry, but until June 5th, I'm still on work hours. Like Utahtea, I'd figured out Cameron, Desert Watchtower, Lake Powell and Monument Valley. I don't think I've been through Monument Valley and Tuba City more than twice in my life, though -- once as a young kid and then finally returned last summer (hubby's first trip through there). I had neve heard of Coal Mine Canyon, either.

    I hope to post my next photos this coming weekend. Now, back to work I go....I took a 10 minute "recess break"!


    Donna

  7. #177
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Posts
    594

    Default If you didn't know it was there, it would be easy to miss!

    Quote Originally Posted by Utahtea View Post
    We've traveled though Tuba City many times over the years and we've even traveled between Tuba City and Hubbell Trading Post on Hwy 264 twice but didn't know about Coal Mine Canyon.

    Utahtea
    I drove AZ 264 any number of times before I first discovered Coal Mine Canyon. Back in 2016, I was off on a week-long road trip, driving some of the routes that I planned to use in my book. That was the fun part of the research, and I was going a little crazy, taking tons of photographs. My friend and I were in Wupatki National Monument, shooting the ruin from various angles, when I ran into an old guy who was also taking pictures. We got to talking, as old guys tend to do, and he asked me if I'd ever been to Bryce Canyon.

    "Of course," I replied. "That's one of my favorite places."

    "Well," he went on, "what if I told you there was a spot not far from here that's like Bryce Canyon and the Grand Canyon combined?"

    "Where's that?"

    "Coal Mine Canyon. It's about 15 miles east of Tuba City, just off Highway 264. There's no sign or anything. You've got to look for a windmill. That's where you turn."

    We were going that way anyhow, headed for Second Mesa to visit my friends at the Tsakurshovi Trading Post, so when we spotted the windmill, we pulled in, and we were very pleasantly surprised. When you're driving through that area, it's mostly flat, with no obvious sign of the colorful gorge that's no more than a quarter of a mile from the paved highway. If you look at the area from above, using Google satellite view, it's not exactly subtle:



    The windmill is between mileposts 336 and 337. There are several forks off the dirt road, and nothing is marked, so you just keep to the right. You'll pass the well and the stock tank on your left, and you stop when you see the picnic tables.



    I'd known about Coal Mine Canyon for decades, but I'd always assumed it was somewhere remote, tough to access. Barry Goldwater, the long-time Senator from Arizona, was quite well known as a photographer, his work frequently appearing in the prestigious Arizona Highways Magazine. The very first picture he sold to that magazine, way back in 1939, was this one, which was titled simply, "Coal Mine Canyon."



    It looks pretty classy in black and white, but when a place is as colorful as this, I honestly prefer a color image. This is taken from a viewpoint very close to where the Senator took his famous photo. A mere 80 years later!



    Rick
    Last edited by Rick Quinn; 05-21-2020 at 02:25 PM.

  8. Default

    No blindfolds or spinning for my next place because it would be way too dangerous!

    Here is the route we're going on to take for our hike! It is not for the faint of heart or people who are afraid of heights but my friend who is afraid of heights did it and said she'd do it again. We did have one person back out on the first ladder and this is the view of the path and second ladder.



    Before you can go down the second ladder that's in the above picture, you have to carefully navigate down the stone steps!



    And this is the ladder once we were down.



    We had a beautiful morning for it. This is the view across the canyon from our hike.


    Here we are at our destination!

    This is the view to the right



    and this is the view to the left



    I have seen these ruins many times but didn't even know there was a hike until a couple of years ago and last fall we were able to do the hike.

    I could easily post one picture that might give it away and another one that would totally give it away...but for now...let's see what we get for answers!

    Where am I? What is the name of the ruins?

    Utahtea

  9. #179
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    11,532

    Default Balcony view ?

    Those cut out rock steps make me think you're heading to Balcony house in Mesa Verde NP.

    Dave

  10. #180
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    5,473

    Default

    Peeking in before I "go to work".....I'm thinking those might be some ruins in Canyonlands NP. That 4th picture looks so much like CLNP in the Needles District. Anasazi ruins?



    Donna

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