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05/02/14 through 05/04/14 - Monument Valley Tour


Well, it's history now but I think we're all in agreement that was one of the best extended tours we had in a long time. It was quite an experience to see John Wayne Country close up and personal, but somewhat difficult to grasp due to the size and majesty of it all. The guides were excellent and entertaining, adding to the enjoyment. Everyone commented on how great the tour was and we appreciate that very much, after 15 years of club touring it's almost impossible to come up with anything unique or different that is also interesting, this tour really filled the bill on that score and makes me wonder why we didn't do it years ago.

I did get some excellent photographs suitable for enlargement and framing and I know others did as well. Next time I watch "The Searchers" with John Wayne I am sure I will be able to relate to many of the rock formations in the movie. Actually, John Ford directed 7 movies in MV.

I Thank all the participants without whom there would be no events and no club.

We will have a one day tour sometime in early June but the destination has not been decided, it will most likely be a trip somewhere north for lunch (cooler country)

Thanks again for your support of the club

Paul  - 5/5/14



It is approximately a 7 hour day from Phoenix to Mexican Hat including lunch, fuel stops and the fact that the destination is on Daylight Savings Time so we lose an hour. There are other, more scenic routes to Kayenta, AZ but they are longer and require even more time. We do want to be careful with our speed on the Indian reservations as citations are a major source of income for them.

Assemble at 8:45 and depart at 9:00 AM
We'll meet at the Albertson's shopping center on Carefree Hwy just east of interstate 17. Meet at the far east end by the bank. There is coffee and a restroom available in Albertson's.

We will head north on interstate 17 to Flagstaff and exit at the Lake Mary exit. When you come down the off ramp you will see a gas station and convenience store almost directly in front of you on the north side of Lake Mary road, this is where we will get a comfort break and fill the fuel tanks. It's 90 miles from Phoenix to Lake Mary road so we should arrive there at about 10:30 AM. It will be a 15 minute break and we'll get back on 17 north and pick up US 40 east. the next turn is at exit 201 Country Club Drive. Bear to the left turn lane at the bottom of the ramp and take Country Club Drive, you will be crossing over Hwy 40 & route 66 and then bear to your right and pick up Hwy 89 north. It comes up quickly and it helps if you are in the correct lane to make the right hand turn on to 89. It's about 100 miles from Flagstaff to Cameron where we will stop for lunch and fuel at the Cameron Trading Post. We should arrive there at about 12:15 and depart at about 1:15. Following lunch we will fuel up and depart as a group to the next waypoint which is Kayenta, about 97 miles arriving there at about 2:45 PM. (or, it may be 3:45 PM, I don't know where DST comes into play) We'll take another comfort break and fuel for anybody who needs it and then head north on Hwy 163 to Mexican Hat about 45 miles arriving there at about 4:30 PM DST. The time estimates may not be completely accurate but it really doesn't matter, we get there when we get there.

For those of us staying in Mexican Hat there is a famous steak house nearby and for those who wish, we can group together for a dinner. Everyone is welcome to join in including those members staying at the View hotel if they don't mind the drive, about 42 miles one way. 

There are two close by attractions near Mexican Hat, Muley Point Overlook and Gooseneck State Park. We will inquire about road conditions and if the roads are paved we might want to see these, time permitting. They both look fantastic in the photographs at the attached links below. Following the MV tour on Saturday morning we will have the rest of the day to do as we wish and that may include checking out some of the other points of interest.

There are other attractions in the general area of Kayenta and our member Donna Jones brings this to our attention. Here is the information she sent me so I am including it for anyone who is interested. We won't have time to make these stops on the way up but the Jones's and a few others are planning on seeing all or some of these on the return trip and staying an extra night at the La Posada hotel in Winslow. If you are interested in joining in, please contact Donna at dljones.az@gmail.com for details and hotel info.

Needless to say, you will want to bring your photographic equipment on the MV tour and please remember to bring your club radio and start out with a full fuel tank. I will assume you retained the info sent previously on the tour itself, Saturday morning May 3rd at 10:30 AM  (Mountain Daylight Time) we gather at the View Hotel. Here is the official tour guide info:

Ralph D. Olson

Reservations Manager

Monument Valley Simpson's Trailhandler Tours, LLC

Tel:  435.727.3362

Fax:  435.608.4424



If you have any questions, please let me know.


Paul Ebeyer, President

From Donna Jones

Hi Paul

Here’s the information on the side trips we could do either on the way up or the way down.  

Wupatki National Monument is located off Hwy 89, about 20 miles south of the Cameron Trading Post.  According to the park site it takes about 2 hours to visit the 5 pueblos.  They are easy walks and self-guided tours, according to the information.     If we decided to stop at Wupatki, my suggestion would be to stop first at Cameron for lunch, then back track the 20 miles to the monument.

Navajo National Monument is located off of Hwy 160 between Cow Springs and Kayenta on 564.  There are 3 trails that are self-guided and give you a view of the cliff dwellings.  I don’t think anyone is interested In the 17 mile hike.  I think this also is about a 2 hour stop, depending on how long or how many trails people would be interested in checking out.

If anyone is interested, we will be extending our trip by one day, spending Sunday night at La Posada in Winslow.    Aside from ‘Standing on the corner’, we’re planning to stop at one of the places mentioned above depending on what we do on our way to Monument Valley and then drive home on Monday via Hwy 87.    

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