The morning was beautiful, just the right prescription for our outing to visit several places.
The first place we went to was at Montezuma Castle National Monument, about 26 miles south of Sedona. An easy drive, just get on I-17 from AZ-179 S.
Montezuma Castle has well-preserved cliff dwellings which were built by the Sinagua people between 1100-1450 AD. The main structure has five stories and 20 rooms. It is like an apartment building, is 90 feet off the valley floor. U.S. President Teddy Roosevelt declared protection for the castle. Before the protection people were allowed inside the structure, and because limestone is soft, there were destruction, so no people were allowed inside the structure.
It is a 1/3 of a mile loop to walk to view the structure. There are interpretive signs at the visitor center and along the loop.
|Thanks to Teddy Roosevelt for preserving the castle|
|Diorama showing the interior of a cliff dwelling|
The It is a natural limestone sinkhole and the spring underneath yields about 1.5 million gallons of water each day. The Well measures 386 feet in diameter from rim to rim. The water is highly carbonated and contains high levels of arsenic. Because of that there are no fishes there; however there are aquatic life there.
There are several cliff dwellings that are scattered in and around the rim of the Well. The ruins of several prehistoric dwellings are scattered in and around the rim of the Well.
It was very interesting to see some graffitis on the rocks. One of few that we were intrigued about: “Photos of this by Rothrock,” and it was dated 1878. George Rothrock advertised his photographs by leaving his name on the rock.
|"Advertisement" in 1878|
|Fallen Sycamore tree|
|Should I go ahead and kiss the frog?|
|Locks of Love|
|Albert Einstein sculpture|
|I got this one|
|Erwin picked that one|
There is a statue garden with life-sized javelinas (pig-like) near Los Abridgados Resort.
I wanted to go to the Airport area for sunset photography, since the weather looked favorable. When we were on way I was not too sure if there was going to be a beautiful sunset because the grey clouds were starting to build up.
To park at the airport parking lot is $3 per vehicle, so Erwin dropped me off and he went to a different parking spot, further from where I was and read a book. I was surprised to see how many photographers there were. It was not easy finding a good spot because many had already been taken. Next time I'll come very early. But, anyway, I managed to find a spot behind two photographers.
We treated ourselves to cupcakes for having a great day.