Natural Bridges: Untold Stories of a Past Life

What a way to end our Utah adventure. Natural Bridges is a bit out of the way, at least for the common tourist. However, we are not common tourists. We are simply heading to California and looking to see what there is to see. After the crowds at Arches and Canyonlands, the seclusion of Bridges was welcome.

We camped in the one campground, in which we paid $5 to stay and there were 13 sites. The grounds were mostly sand, one asphalt road, two toilets, and no noise. The cool, but not Colorado-morning-40 degree-cold, was also welcome. After arriving at the park, we took time to relax under a shade tree, read up on the history of the park, and finish our crossword. After enjoying a light and quick supper, we decided to see one of the three bridges and visit Horsecollar Ruins, in all about a 2 mile hike down into the canyon (and back up of course).

The first bridge, Sipapu, means “place of emergence”, a gateway by which the Hopi people believed the ancestors passed into the spirit world. This may seem rather silly to us today, but after seeing this bridge in person, I can see how one might think this magical place an entryway to the next life. This bridge is the second largest natural bridge in the world, spanning 268 feet and 220 feet high.

 The sun setting on White Canyon. The rock jutting out into the once river is the top of Sipapu.
 Can you spot Kevin’s silhouette?
Horsecollar Ruins got its name from the shape of the doors to a granary left behind from an ancestral Puebloan dwelling. In the second picture, left of the granaries is a kiva, a communities ceremonial and meeting room.

The last 2 bridges coming soon!

What do you think about Natural Bridges so far? When are you making plans to visit Utah?! 🙂


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