Painted Desert and Petrified Forest

The drive through the Painted Desert and the Petrified Forest is 28 miles and takes about three hours.  It is one of the most interesting three hours I have spent anywhere.



The picture does not do justice to the beauty of this land.  Maybe a real artist could do so but I think not.









These views must be seen to be believed.








I have a number of other pictures but these three will give you a small sample of the beauty of the Painted Desert. If you want to see the additional pictures, click here.






These are the ruins of a village that flourished about 800 years ago.  It seems to have been a combination of the Anasazi people to the north and the Mogollons to the south.  Traces of both civilizations were found here.





These petroglyphs can be seen near the village.  I have no idea what they mean.  It could be anything from a serious philosophical statement to graffiti.






This building is in much better shape than any other structure on the site.  It must have been added at a later date.  The two petroglyphs that can be seen also appear to be of later origin.







This is called the Agate Bridge.  The ground has washed from under the petrified tree and left it to form a natural bridge.  The concrete support beneath the bridge was added about 1932 to prevent the bridge from falling down.  Several cracks can already be seen..








The petrified trees appears in all sizes from these bits and pieces to nearly intact trees.









As you can see, this petrified tree is nearly intact.








This is a close-up view of one of the fragments.  As you can see, it is made up of several different minerals; whatever was available to fill in the space left after the original tree rotted away.

There are more pictures of the Petrified Forest.  Click here to see them.