We left the Grand Canyon and headed north. Our next destination was the Grand Staircase – Escalante National Monument in Utah. Our route took us north on Hwy 89 to Page, AZ and over to Kanab, UT to carry us on to our destination. But while in the truck I noticed a Hwy 89A that split at Bitter Springs, AZ that skirted the south edge of the Vermillion Cliffs National Monument and a “red dot” labeled “Navajo Bridge” and on to Fredonia where it soon met back up with regular ‘ol Hwy 89 in Kanab.
I know in this day and age of wildly popular electronics and gadgets it seems ridiculous to read anything “paper” while navigating but any RVer worth his/her salt will tell you it’s a must. I will admit to not carrying any maps. I leave that to the GPS in the dash and our phones. I do, however, have an American Highway road atlas I picked up at a gas station a while back. It claims “140 detailed road maps and 55 large city maps and a national parks section with profiles of the top 12 parks.” I bought this a few years ago before I was even considering RVing. It appears to have been published in MMXIII. (2013. I had to look it up too….) This comes in handy ALL THE TIME!
- double check Janet (what we lovingly call our in-dash sat-nav)
- get my general bearings
- illustrate to Michael when a cell phone screen is just too small
You may be asking yourself, “what in the heck is a ‘red dot’ “? It’s just my atlas’ way of noting points of interest. So I started investigating this Navajo Bridge and decided it fell perfectly into a “Dillon Vacation Detour”. So we took it.
But before we even got that far we saw signs for “Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument“. We actually saw signs for this on the road, and turns out, it’s POI in my map too! We had no idea what it was or what to expect, but hey! That’s how a “Dillon Vacation” goes! *wink*wink*
It was most interesting volcanic rubble! We were able to hike around in it and take photos!! You let the Boadway’s climb on rocks and they are happy!!!
I want to note here that I made the $80 “investment” of an Annual National Parks Pass while at the Grand Canyon. Hey, it’s only a $10 lifetime pass if you’re over 62! By the end of the vacation it had already paid for itself. I highly recommend it since it gives you free access to all the national parks. They can get kind of expensive….. $25/ car here, $5/ car there… it adds up! This really is the cheap way to see them time and again throughout the year!
Highway 89A did not disappoint! It is an official scenic byway. We even stopped at a marked area of ancient pueblos!
And we made it to the Navajo Bridge! (ok, I have since figured out how to get the exposure correct when I have light and shadow in my view. I did not know how to do that then… Please excuse my learning curve….)
Trying to stay free and easy, I had left one night open for us to boondock. See! I do have a wild side!! If I haven’t mentioned it before I use www.overnightrvparking.com. It’s a subscription site on where you can stay overnight, usually for free. There are other free sites but I like this one because other RVers submit info to “keep it real”. I found we could just pull over on the side of the road on a gravel pull out on 89A. So we did.
Sometimes you get a stinker. And sometimes you hit the jackpot!
This was our backyard in Vermillion Cliffs!!
The next morning… on to UTAH!!!!!