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Touratech Travel Time 03_2011_en

Leser on To u r 74 ADVENTURE UTAH/ARIZONA are now facing are not quite as danger- ous. They have brown skin, wear mouth masks, fiddle around with tripods, and their camera are on over- load. The throng of visitors has become so large today, that we have no choice but to join the ava- lanche of tourists from Japan through the narrow canyon windings. It must be its uniqueness that lets Antelope Canyon retain its magic spell. And like Antelope Canyon, Monu- ment Valley is also located on the Navajo Indian Reservation. Actually the ten dollars for the rundown and dusty camping site are a bit rich, but the view is priceless. The soft light of the after- noon sun dips the famous mesas into a deep red while we en- joy our tour of the wonderful scenery riding over stony and partiallysandytracks.Quitetheoppositetothemanytouristswho have to suffer a guided tour in jeeps. These tours are organised by the local Navajo Indians and there is no pardon for the vehicles or the visitors bouncing around in the backs of the pick- ups. Obviously there is no intention of providing a tarmac road, as the money earned with these tours is good business for the Reservation. Looking at the grins on the drivers’ faces I can’t suppress the feeling (which I somehow quite like) that the White Man is being paid back a bit for the injustices experienced by the Navajos over the past hundred years. During the Blue Hour – the last light of the day – we sit out- side our tent enjoying a sip of red wine from stainless steel beakers, view the scenery from our grandstand and thank the stars for creating something so beautiful. Is there a better way to start the day than watching the sun- rise in Monument Valley? Hardly, and we certainly had not ex- pected things to continue on this grand scale. Even the two Enduros seemed to be having more fun than usual. As the mesas became smaller and smaller in our rear view mirrors we coast along the highway at the obligatory 70 mph towards southern Utah. Shortly behind Mexican Hat we turned onto highway 261. And again, the dimensions are awesome. Under a clear-blue sky with a few cirrus clouds, and the road straight as an arrow, we pass through the Valley of Gods, a sort of miniature Monument Valley. Way in front us a foreboding mesa, it looks as if we are heading for a dead end. My GPS says the opposite. Typically, I hadn’t bothered to check the