During the years 1966 – 1971 I was photographing car races, and from 1970 on also an Indian tribe in Venezuela. In October -November 1968 I was coverin the CAN-AM (group 7) series of races. I had photographed the penultimate race in Riverside, and I was on my way, traveling by car, to the last race in Las Vegas. While in Arizona I suppose that someone suggested that I visit the Canyon de Chelly National Monument, inside the Navajo Indian Reservation. I don’t remember where I spent the night and where I left my car; I got a ride to the unofficial “entrance” of the reserve. I think I entered the reserve through or below barbed wires… I am not sure if it was from the Window Rock – Tsaile road or from the Tsaile – Chinle road. In the first case I would have seen the dam on the Tsaile creek and the lake; in the alternative case I would have entered Middle Trail Canyon. Glenn Rink who studied the vegetation of the reserve thinks: “I am not sure where you entered the canyons, but I’ll bet it was at Middle Trail Canyon, the small northern tributary to Canyon del Muerto.”
to Glenn Rink who identified some of the trees and plants in these pictures.
Photos 1 – 2 were taken where I spent the night (in a tube tent -see drawing after the photographs), next to the creek. Probably some 3 to 5 hours from the road. Obviously there were oak trees besides the conifers.
This is about where I spent the night in a tube tent. In the morning the creek was partially frozen.
When I reached the entrance of the Monument the ranchers were puzzled, seeing someone coming from nowhere. They asked me where I came from. I said from the road near Tsaile, initially walking down the creek bed, then following trails. They said they had never been there…
This is how I described a tube tent in a letter to my family.
By Glenn Rink. Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ (page with download link)
Threat of invasive species:
Cooperative Watershed Restoration Project: Tamarisk and Russian Olive Management at Canyon de Chelly National Monument. National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior