Pueblo Cliff Dwellings at Walnut Canyon National Monument


A few days after our big Grand Canyon experience, we thought we would make the trip to do the Skywalk at Eagle Point.  (This major engineering marvel allows visitors to walk onto a glass bridge that extends 70 feet out over the rim of the Canyon.  Yes, you can look down to the bottom of the Canyon, which is more than 4,000 feet below.)

However, I flubbed on the planning.  Silly me thought the Skywalk was only an hour and a half away from our hotel in Flagstaff--not four hours away!  After mulling over the idea of traveling more than 8 hours in one day just to do a 10 minute walk on a glass bridge, I decided the long journey back and forth in the car was just not worth it.  What 8 year old wants to spend the majority of the day sitting in a car?  What fun is that?!

We decided to go to the hotel front desk to ask for other ideas.  As it turned out, there were a lot of sights to see right around Flagstaff--now the problem was choosing between them.  Since we were in the mood for hiking, and we had a beautiful, breezy, 77 degree day, we chose to go to the Walnut Canyon National Monument, which was only ten minutes away.  It sounded like a fun adventure but we didn't know just how fun it would be.

The Island Trail inside the park ended up being one of our favorite parts of our entire Arizona trip.  It was exhilarating to hike down steep canyon terrain looking for ancient cliff dwellings (from when it was inhabited from 1100 to 1250).   The views and scenery from our 185 vertical foot descent provided breathtaking memories that I won't soon forget.  It was amazing to see how people lived during these times--it was their version of today's highrise luxury apartments.

Of course, I was amazed by the scenery, the history, and the culture of the park, but I was also amazed by Lewie.  During this trip, I watched Little Lewie grow up right before my eyes.  The young boy I knew would have complained about the long hike, the strenuous trip back up the cliff, and the valuable time he's missing being away from the pool.  Not this Lewie.  This older version was a trooper.  He enjoyed taking pictures and admiring the scenery just as much as we did and only once did he note how difficult it was to climb back up to the visitor center.  He definitely turned into quite the travel companion on this trip.   I was one proud Mom!


  1. Aw, Lewie did so good! Simon would be complaining like crazy!

  2. What beautiful sites to see!! I cannot wait to make my way out there


  3. I would have passed on 8 hours in the car too! Looks like your day was still filled with plenty of adventure though!

  4. I have always wanted to see cliff dwellings. Hopefully one day!


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