There’s only one place in the world in which you can be in Colorado, Arizona, Utah and New Mexico all at the same time – the Four Corners Monument in this part of south-western United States known as the Four Corners region. Rachel made sure to spread herself as evenly as possible across all four states: a hand or foot in each:
This is the intersection of all four of the states mentioned above – a monument, which is managed by the Navajo Nation, who take the opportunity to sell their wares in the quadrant that forms the Four Corners site. It’s impossible to be there without having your photo taken, straddling the intersection of states, employing some form of undignified bodily contortion.
We didn’t stay long at the Four Corners Monument as we were on our way, ever further north, to the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as Mesa Verde. After entering the state of Colorado for the second time on our trip, it was striking how the landscape became steadily greener and the trees more numerous the further north we went. Trees became taller and their types more varied and we could see the touch of fall creeping in as greens began to turn to yellow, orange and red. It was a tangible relief to be leaving the Arizona desert behind for the lush and verdant lands of Colorado.
We spent hours in Mesa Verde, touring the vast area, stopping off to admire view after beautiful view. Our most enjoyable part of the day was a ranger-led tour of Cliff Palace: the largest cliff dwelling in the Mesa Verde park. It’s over 700 years since the dwelling was built and it looks in almost perfect condition, although the roof of each dwelling is missing as they will have been made of timber and earth – only the stone walls have survived. Here are a few photos from our tour:
After a long day in the heat, we stayed overnight in Cortez.