Sunday, September 8, 2002
Up and Around Lake Powell
The trekkers board the houseboat provided by Amarark Corporation and begin their leisurely trip up Lake Powell. Meanwhile the support group will drive around to Halls Crossing where they take the ferry across the lake to Bullfrog Bay.
The 300-mile drive-around promises to be a singular experience for Jessica, Jacob, Lori, and Kay who have never been to the Southwest. The drive will take them across some of the most spectacular landscapes of the Four Corners region.
Beginning in Page, Arizona, the town Glen Canyon Dam begot, the drive-around takes them past the Navajo Power Plant, one of the main air polluters of the region. Navajo Mountain, one of the sacred mountains of the Navajo people, looms in the distance as they drive toward Black Mesa, source of the coal for the power plant. From Black Mesa they cross over the naked sandstones of Marsh Pass, down into Kayenta where they turn north toward Monument Valley whose isolated buttes and spires soon come into view. This is a stark, harsh land of great distances and great silences. The land of the Dineh, as the Navajo people call themselves.
At Mexican Hat the support group says goodby to Navajo lands, crosses the muddy San Juan River, then turns north. A short sidetrip takes them to the Goosenecks Overlook for a view of the canyon-cut, meandering channel of the San Juan. Continuing up the switchbacks of the Moqui Dugway they top out on Cedar Mesa for another breathtaking view, encompassing Colorado's San Juan Mountains on the east to Navajo Mountain on the west, and so much beauty in between that, to quote elk hunter Arnulfo Gonzalez, "you can almost talk to God."
Turning left on the Highway of the Ancients near Natural Bridges National Monument, the support group will drive on down to Halls Crossing on Lake Powell and wait for the ferry to take them across the lake to Bullfrog Bay.