|Navajo National Monument|
High on the Shonto Plateau, overlooking the Tsegi Canyon system in the Navajo Nation, Navajo National Monument preserves three of the most intact cliff dwellings of the ancestral puebloan people (Hisatsinom). The Navajo people who live here today call these ancient ones "Anasazi."
Canyon de Chelly National Monument
|Description: The canyon consists of four main gorges, with many side ravines branching eastward from Chinle into the Defiance Plateau. This is one of the longest continuously inhabited landscapes of North America, with many cultural resources, including distinctive architecture, artifacts, and rock imagery. Canyon de Chelly sustains a community of Navajo people who plant crops and maintain sheep and goats in the canyon.|
Wildlife to Watch: Golden eagles can be seen here, along with turkey vulture and peregrine falcon. During the spring and fall, many migratory songbirds can be found among the cottonwoods and dense Russian olive stands near the mouth of the canyon. The pinyon pine-juniper woodlands along the rim of the canyon are regularly frequented by pinyon and western scrub-jays, juniper titmouse, bushtit, Bewick’s wren, and white-breasted nuthatch. These species are joined during the summer by ash-throated flycatcher, western and Cassin’s kingbirds, black-throated gray warbler, and gray and plumbeous vireos. Reptiles and amphibians that may be observed in the area include the Hopi race of prairie rattlesnake, gophersnake, glossy snake, terrestrial gartersnake, eastern collared lizard, ornate tree lizard, many-lined skink, plains and Mexican spadefoot, red-spotted toad, and Woodhouse’s toad.
Other Activities: Rugged trails, one self-guided, others require guides
Ownership: National Park Service
Size: 83,840 acres
Closest Town: Chinle
Best Seasons for Wildlife Viewing: