ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

A Journey Through Shifting Sands : Arizona to New Mexico

Updated on September 4, 2017

Desert Landscape

Source
Source

A Desert Revealed

With scorching desert heat during the day, crisp and cool nights under star-spangled skies -- dense with clusters of stars so often obscured by dazzling artificial lights in our cities -- I know our road trip conceals secrets Native Americans have known for centuries. But, for the likes of me, the journey is new and the road untraveled. So join me as I explore the southwestern part of our wonderful country, discovering mysteries of the past through a landscape filled with canyons, mountains, plains, volcanoes, woods and natural forests that have witnessed many lifetimes of human existence and billions of years before man ever walked this planet. Overwhelmed by the enormity of this awareness, I feel like a speck passing through, wondrously amazed at how small I really am! To be part of this universe feels like a privilege; the short time I inhabit this earth is a lifetime to me, yet minuscule in the grand scheme of things.

Road Trip Explorations

Precious Discoveries

From Flagstaff, Arizona to Santa Fe, New Mexico, the road was long and dotted with shifting landforms and landscape - plateaus changing to steep rocks and cliffs, straw-colored hills gradually assuming stubbly green contours, and then slowly revealing signs of increased fertility in the lush green hills undulating in the distance. Towns and villages we passed along the nearly two thousand miles of highways and byways on this route gave us a glimpse into the relics of Native American history and culture in the fleeting landscape. Navajo, Hopi, Zuni, Apache, Pueblo and so many indigenous cultures and tribes have woven their artistry and beliefs into the baskets, fetishes, and intricate jewelry designs, delicately and laboriously crafted using silver, copper, turquoise, quartz, amber, onyx, amethyst and other gifts of nature in the form of precious and semi-precious stones found in the region. Trading posts selling these authenticated items pop up in the countryside along any route, as do vendors setting up shop to sell their hand-made wares.

Draped in Red: The City of Sedona

Hues ranging from orange and copper to flaming red drape the stone formations of Sedona, luring tourists to the varied hiking trails and bumpy jeep adventures. Nestled amid these red sandstone formations lie spiritual sanctuaries and nature-based spas, inviting passersby to rest and recuperate. A scene of perfect tranquility offered itself during a rafting tour of the Colorado River that began at the Glen Canyon Dam in Page, Arizona and wound its way through the canyon to ancient Navajo and Anasazi petroglyphs inscribed into these stones that have stood to tell the tales that date back centuries.

Source
Source
Source

Interplay of light and shadows

Nature's Spectacular Architecture: The Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon bewilders as you stand above it on the rim overlooking the architecture created by centuries of nature’s moods and tumultuous vagaries. Unlike temples carved by the hand of man, these are testimony of the skill and passion of forces beyond our scope of vision. Strangely enough, even tour guides had differing versions of what caused these formations of rock – from processes of change during the ice age and thereafter, to sand storms during a period of powerful winds, erosion over billions of years, and the force of water. The Colorado River flows calmly, winding its way through the cracks within the formations of the canyon as if privy to the secret of those ancient times, unwilling to divulge it, possibly the only witness to the monumental events shrouded in the mist of earth’s prehistoric and primordial past. Waking up at 4 AM one morning, I drove over to the canyon for a glimpse of sunrise over these mystical cathedrals and carvings, and was mesmerized by the interplay of shadows and light, as the sun gloriously emerged over the rim in the horizon.

A Transcendental Journey

If sunrise is to meditate and welcome a new day, nighttime has its wonders too. Fortunate enough to arrive at the Grand Canyon on a day the area’s astronomers had picked to offer a view of the performance of the night’s stars, we were treated to an outstanding show through powerful telescopes placed strategically at various points. And, even without the telescopes, what a spectacular illumination in the night sky of this desert! Minuscule I am, indeed, and truly humbled by the magnanimity and magnificence of the universe.


As the Sun Sets

© 2014 Neetu M

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • wordswithlove profile imageAUTHOR

      Neetu M 

      13 months ago from USA

      Thank you, Moonfroth. Yes, you have remarked on my prose now and again and I am honored that you think so well of it. Personally and professionally, it is very encouraging to me to receive such a compliment. You know I have a very high regard for your critique, be it that of my prose or my poetry.

    • profile image

      MOONFROTH 

      13 months ago

      Over the years of our professional interaction and personal friendship, I have often remarked on the expressive power of your prose, which I have enjoyed only in short critiques of poetry. HERE, for the first time, I see it full-blown, living validation of my eye/ear for elegant prose! I lived the landscape, without indulgent description-for-its-own-sake. thank you.

    • wordswithlove profile imageAUTHOR

      Neetu M 

      3 years ago from USA

      Thank you, Peg. I am glad you enjoyed the tour. It was my first trip through those parts and was quite astounding in all the different colors it revealed to me. I hope to go again sometime. :)

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 

      3 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      Gorgeous tour of this magnificent work of nature. I loved all the photos and even watched the video at the end. Beautiful place. It's been years since I drove in that area of the country.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)