Saturday, January 3, 2009

Road Trip 2008: Natural Bridges NM

As the name suggests, the main attractions of the park are natural bridges. It features the second (Sipapu, 67m high, 82m long) and the third (Kachina, 64m high, 62m long) largest natural bridges in the world. Both bridges are easily accessible from the Bridge View Drive, which winds through the park forming 9-mile loop.

Sipapu Bridge:

Kachina Bridge at sunset:

We planned to stay for a night at Natural Bridges NM, but, to our surprise, it only had a very small campground with as few as 13 sites that were distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. When we arrived there close to sundown at 5:30 pm, all camping spots were already taken. After checking the map, we realized that the nearest place where we could spend a night at was 2h away. Therefore, if we wanted to see Natural Bridges NM, we should do that during the remaining 1.5h of day light and move on only once it gets completely dark.

Because of that, it became a very long day for us. On that day we hiked in Canyon de Chelly NM, we visited Monument Valley and drove on Moki Dugway, and after we were sightseeing Natural Bridges. And from there we still needed to drive for more than 2h to get to the nearest town with motels. This was probably the day on which we did the most of driving. Add to this insecurity of where we will sleep and you will get two stressed and exhausted girls. This tough day day took its toll on us and towards its end Agnieszka and I managed to get into conflict and start arguing. Luckily, Agnieszka is very reasonable and non-aggressive person, so we managed to resolve this conflict fast and without lasting damage.