Saturday, December 19, 2009

Views of Walnut Canyon, Arizona

I introduced Walnut Canyon in my previous post and how it was a thriving settlement of Native Americans during the 1200s. In this post I would like to present images of the buildings in which these early peoples lived. The way they innovated and used natural rock surfaces as walls and roofs and built just one wall to create a home amidst the most hostile and precarious surroundings. Here are a few examples of the homes and dwellings of Native Americans in the Walnut Canyon of Arizona.
Wall of a ruined home in Walnut Canyon
Remains of a home in Walnut Canyon
Home remains in Walnut Canyon

Friday, December 18, 2009

Arizona's Walnut Canyon

When I was in India America/ US meant couple of things such as New York, Los Angeles, Grand Canyon, Niagara Falls, etc. Till the time I landed here I hadn't known that there exist several natural, historical and heritage locations in this country. I got first hand knowledge about this conglomerate of states when I first traveled from Los Angeles to Dallas stopping at several interesting locations enroute.

One of the locations we stopped at was Walnut Canyon, a narrow and deep gorge like valley in the middle of Arizona. This was the site of large native American settlement as recently as 1200 CE. These native Americans were either killed or forced out of their location by invading immigrant Europeans, let us not get into that for now. Today Walnut Canyon is a national park and preserved location. The pre-historic dwellings, artifacts and other heritage items have been protected and signage installed to educate visitors about the location. Here are a few pictures of the Walnut Canyon and the ruins found there.
Walnut Canyon Facade
Walnut Canyon: Another view of the valley/ gorge
A view of the valley where native Americans lived in Walnut Creek/ Canyon

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Visual Travel Guides!!!

Travel guides traditionally have been books, then came the era of VHS, then CDs and the internet. PDF downloadable guide books were next and then there are Blogs, websites, promotional webpages etc hit the market in a big way. But now the latest product to hit the market is Visual travel guides from Magellan. The USP of these guides is that travelers can get the real feel of a place before they decide to go there. If after seeing the Visual Travel guides don't appeal to anybody they will not visit that destination. These guides come at a price though, for $20 you could visit a popular city like San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and many other places. This may well be the next wave of travel publications.

Painted Desert and Petrified Forest

Arizona in the US is quite similar in terrain to the cold Himalayan desert region of Ladakh in India. One national park I particularly liked in Arizona is the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest national park. This is one place where nature's beauty and power of transformation along with the human destruction can be seen vividly. The park features colorful hills formed by flooding, then we can see trees turned into stone of myriad colors and textures. Then lastly we can also see how humans have destroyed several of the natural heritage by cutting them and carting them off for private and commercial uses.
Colorful hills in the Painted desert

Colorful hills in the Painted desert

Cross section of a petrified wood block

Cross section of a petrified wood block

Blocks of petrified wood strewn around in the desert

Blocks of petrified wood strewn around in the desert

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Cold, boring but hectic winter days

The best thing about blogs, they just keep going. Hence I continue to blog about what's happening in my life even if it is most boring even for me to write about. I have been raving and ranting about winter and how the cold windy weather is preventing me from getting outdoors and doing something. Something good about winter though is that there is a lot of part time/ temp jobs available... so I am at least able to make some money during the holiday season... I hope the job streak continues into spring and summer....