Wupatki National Monument

Pueblo Ruins

Pueblo Ruins Β© 2007

Wupatki National Monument, just twenty minute drive north of Flagstaff, Arizona, was established by the National Park system to preserve Native American archeological sites dating from the 1200s and the surrounding lands.

The area has geological formations and abrupt elevation changes that, within only a few miles, provide six different eco-systems, and a wide variety of habitats for plants and animals.The effects of elevation are visible along the 36 mile loop road connecting Wupatki with Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument to the south.

Desert in Bloom

High Desert Grasslands in Bloom

A drive along this road isa journey from desert grasslands (at less than 5,000’ elevation) to Ponderosa pine forest (near 7,000’). In October, the desert floor springs to life with flowers and new growth. Rabbitbrush glows bright yellow against the black cinders, remains from the nearby volcanic eruption, the red rock in the distance, and the blue sky.

About Bo Mackison

I'm a photographer, book-artist, traveler, naturalist, and creator of the Contemplative Creatives Journey, An Online Workshop and Community and Desert Wisdom Cards and Workshops. Though often not well known, I find the desert a welcoming place - a healing space. Its mysteries and gifts transformed me several years ago. Since that first encounter, I return again and again to fill my well in what most people think of as a desolate region. I'd love to share my desert discoveries and wisdom with you. Please subscribe to receive my five part mini email course The Gifts of the Desert. It's my gift to you.


  1. Good to see photos of that area! I used to visit there often.

  2. Beautiful! I especially like the photo of the High Desert Grasslands in bloom. πŸ™‚

  3. Gorgeous, Bo. Best time to be there.

  4. Arizona is one of my all-time favorite states. Traveling once from the Phoenix area to the Grand Canyon revealed completely different topography with every turn. The Flagstaff area is bsolutely one of the most fascinating places on this earth. But then again, I simply love everything about Arizona. I’m envious that you are there and I am here!

  5. Oh, I *love* the Pueblo Ruins picture.

  6. pretty awesome. I’m a big fan of the National Parks. We need to preserve the special areas.

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