Walnut Canyon National Monument, Arizona

Walnut Canyon National Monument
Walnut Canyon, located 10 miles from the northern Arizona city of Flagstaff was once the home of the Sinagua - the Canyon's only permanent inhabitants. The name Sinagua - Spanish for "without water" was a tribute by the Spanish explorers to the Native's ability to turn a relatively dry region into a homeland. They were experts in conserving water - growing drought resistant forms of corn, beans and squash.

The Sinagua built their homes under limestone ledges, deep within the canyon, some time between 1125 and 1250 AD - taking advantage of the natural recesses in the limestone cliff walls which were eroded over millions of years by flowing water. The dwellings were occupied for about 100 years before being abandoned for reasons as yet unknown. Although the Sinagua were the only permanent inhabitants, they were by no means the first to have encountered the Canyon with its abundance of plants and animals. Evidence suggests that nomadic Archaic peoples, who travelled throughout the Southwest, probably occupied parts of the canyon on a seasonal basis.

The homes in Walnut Canyon remained relatively undisturbed until the 19th century, when the arrival of the railroad in the region in the 1880s, brought with it souvenir hunters. This large scale theft and destruction provoked local efforts to preserve the Canyon and soon garnered national support. Walnut Canyon was proclaimed a national monument in 1915. Ancient dwellings aside, perhaps one of the most striking things about Walnut Canyon is its diverse plant life - ranging from the Prickly Pear cactus to the Douglas fir and the Arizona black walnut for which the Canyon was named. View images of Walnut Canyon here. Miscellaneous images and information: Flora, wildlife, trees,

National Parks: Grand Canyon, Grand Canyon Info, Grand Canyon Map, Walnut Canyon, Sunset Crater and Wutapki Monument, Sunset Crater Info, Wupatki Monument Info, Montezuma Castle and Well, Montezuma Castle Info, Montezuma Well Info, Petrified Forest, Petrified Forest Info, Painted Desert Info.

Attractions: Apache Trail, Apache Trail Info, Apache Trail Map, Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden, Desert Botanical Garden Info, Meteor Crater, Meteor Crater Info, Monument Valley Tribal Park, Monument Valley Info, Oak Creek Canyon, Oak Creek Info, Slide Rocks State Park, Slide Rocks Info, Taliesin West, Taliesin West, Arboretum at Flagstaff, Arboretum at Flagstaff Info. and Towns and Cities: Flagstaff and envrions, Flagstaff Info, Prescott, Prescott Info, Route 66 Info.

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