If you have been following me for a while, you know that I have a great affinity for Monument Valley. It certainly is in my top 10 list of places to visit. I first set foot in Monument Valley in 2004 and have been back many times since. Each time I go, it seems to rejuvenate me, as I take in the beauty of the desert landscape and learn more about the Navajo traditions and culture. Maybe my love for the area started when I watched the old westerns on television and in the movies. The movie that made John Wayne famous,"Stagecoach", was filmed in Monument Valley. The location was found by John Ford and was the first of many collaborations with Wayne that used Monument Valley as a backdrop.
From a photography standpoint, the unique sandstone formations that glow orange during the golden hours, combined with blue skies, clouds and the desert landscape make Monument Valley a very compelling destination. To see parts of the valley, you need to hire a Navajo guide as I did when I captured this photo. The evening sun bathed the sandstone with wonderful light, creating a great shadow of the lone tree. I could have stood there for hours just taking in the scene.