Monday, October 6, 2014

The Four Corners Area of the United States

By Kristy McCaffrey

A popular tourist destination is the Four Corners area in the southwestern U.S. Here, one can occupy Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and Colorado at once.
My husband and I at Four Corners on a chilly New
Year's Eve.
Within this expanse are four prominent landmarks: Monument Valley, Canyon de Chelly, the Painted Desert, and Shiprock.

Monument Valley is located on the Arizona-Utah border on the Colorado Plateau, and the Navajo have preserved the area as a vast tribal park. The iconic sandstone buttes and spires rising from the ground have become famous worldwide, due in part to filmmaker John Ford who featured the area in many western movies in the 1940's and 1950's.
Monument Valley 
Canyon de Chelly (pronounced 'de shay') National Monument is located in northeastern Arizona within the boundaries of the Navajo Nation. Rock art and other excavations reveal human habitation for at least 4,500 years, encompassing not just the Navajo but the ancient Anasazi as well. In the 18th century this became a major stronghold of the Navajo—the high canyon walls offered protection and the streams helped grow corn crops and peach trees. Today, Navajo still live here.
Canyon de Chelly
The Painted Desert, approximately 120 miles long and 60 miles wide, is composed of stratified layers of easily erodible siltstone, mudstone, and shale. The layers of rock contain an abundance of iron and manganese, which cause the varied colors of the region. This area also includes the Petrified Forest National Park, a landscape frozen in time for more than 220 million years, revealing colorful petrified wood and animal fossils. How does wood become petrified? Long-ago floods carried timber onto a plain, then, over time, minerals in the water replaced the wood cells, filling the spaces with quartz and jasper crystals.

The Painted Desert
Petrified Forest National Park
Located in northwestern New Mexico, Shiprock rises 1,583 feet on a desolate plain and is visible in all directions for many miles. It has great religious and historical significance to the Navajo people.


~ Now Available in Print and Digital ~
Cowboys, Creatures, and Calico Vol. 2
Haunted tales of romance set in the Old West
Includes my short story
"The Crow and the Coyote"

In Arizona Territory, Hannah Dobbin travels through CaƱon de Chelly, home to the Navajo, in search of a sorcerer who murdered her pa. Bounty Hunter Jack Boggs is on the trail of a vile Mexican bandito, but with the shadows of Hallowtide descending, more dark magic is at hand than either of them know.

What better way to spend Halloween than with some handsome cowboys and feisty heroines who are determined to fall in love despite their supernatural powers—or lack thereof. Halloween's a good time to take a chance on love—and to see what these Cowboys, Creatures, and Calico Vol. 2 stories might reveal to the unsuspecting reader—YOU!

Cheryl Pierson's Spellbound will have you on the edge of your seat as safecracker Brett Diamond and witch Angie Colton take on a border gang leader who is pure evil. Can Angie's supernatural powers save them? No matter what, Brett and Angie are hopelessly spellbound.

C. Marie Bowen's Hunter and Lily Graham is an unforgettable tale of a beautiful school marm's love for her children that surpasses all. When a Cajun bounty hunter known only as "Hunter" shows up, Lily knows he, and no one else, can help her save a young girl.

Have Wand—Will Travel is Jacquie Roger's offering about a handsome young mage, Tremaine Ramsey, who has a wand and knows how to use it...sometimes. Will his magic be strong enough to pull off a daring rescue of his father from the evil Gharth? Or will he need the warrior Nora's love to help him see his Fate through?

Will Kaye Spencer's character, Mercy Pontiere, be able to break a centuries-old curse and find true love all at the same time? It all depends on Reid Corvane and what he'll do For Love of a Brystile Witch.

In Kristy McCaffrey's story, The Crow and the Coyote, Hannah Dobbin is after an evil Navajo sorcerer who murdered her father, and she's determined to see him dead. But she'll need a bounty hunter—The Crow—to help find this vile man. With Hallowtide upon them, more evil is afoot than they can handle; but love will find a way.

A failed bank robber, Tombstone Hawkins, along with a fake gypsy fortune teller, Pansy Gilchrist, set out to make both their deceased fathers proud in one final spectacular heist. Family Tradition is Kathleen Rice Adam's tale of the discovery of true love amid the commission of a crime—or the failure to commit a crime—while being overseen by the ghosts of the couple's fathers. How can there be a happy ending? It's Halloween, and anything can happen!

Happy Halloween!!


Shanna Hatfield said...

The Four Corners is on my list to visit someday! Thanks for sharing about the area. The book likes like great fun to read! Congrats to you all! :)

Kristy McCaffrey said...

Thanks for stopping by, Shanna! Four Corners is definitely on the bucket list, but it's really in the middle of nowhere. We always pass it on our way to skiing in Colorado (from Phoenix) otherwise it's not on the way to anything.

Caroline Clemmons said...

I love that area, Kristy, although we haven't been there in years. Last time, we hiked Hovenweep ruins before going on to visit the Crow Canyon Archeological Center in Cortez CO before heading for Mesa Verde.

Kristy McCaffrey said...

I haven't been to any of those areas, but I'd love to. I would really like to get up there in the spring/early summer. We usually go in December and it's too cold to do any sightseeing.

Renaissance Women said...

Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah, have visited them all, but never the four corners..Road trip! This country and not just the four corners is full of amazing and precious gifts if we will just take the time to see them. Thank you for sharing yours. Doris

Kristy McCaffrey said...

Thanks so much for stopping by, Doris. The southwestern U.S. offers a smorgasbord of sites!!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

My son is currently employed in Colorado. We're thinking about visiting the Four Corners next summer. It's so beautiful.
Cowboys and the paranormal sounds like fun.

Kristy McCaffrey said...

Thank you Susan for stopping by! Sorry this reply is so late. Four Corners is definitely a Bucket List destination, but be prepared. There's not much there, and the location is very remote. But it has a charm all its own. Hope you make it.