TONALEA WEATHER

White Mesa Arch

White Mesa Arch by @frittfallfoto_no White Mesa Arch by @michaelheiland

Located within the Tonalea chapter boundaries of Tonalea, Arizona on the Navajo reservation. It is seated next to the neighboring chapter boundaries of Kaibeto chapter.

This area is primitive, meaning it is not developed. 4×4 vehicles with a high-clearance is also suggested, as the area has sandy clay roads. Please be respectful of local residents within the area, please respect their land and cattle or sheep they may have. Riding or driving motorized vehicles (including mountain bikes) directly into these areas is prohibited, as sandstone is a fairly delicate sediment rock. If driving to a rock formation, please park at least 30-50 feet away from any unique rock or sand formations to preserve the area for future generations. Climbing any rock formation and any type of drone operation is also prohibited on the Navajo reservation.

This White Mesa Arch spans 53 feet wide and towers 84 feet. The sandstone layers of this natural arch consists of white limestone and varying strata of red, white, yellow and pink sandstone, referred to as ‘Navajo sandstone.’

The Navajo Sandstone consists of thick layers of cross-bedded sandstone formed by windblown sand dunes in a vast ancient desert. In the early Jurassic, the climate of the Colorado Plateau dried significantly, creating desert conditions over a broad region. The Navajo Sandstone is the result of the largest known sand desert in the history of our planet, which covered the area of today’s Colorado Plateau and beyond.

Diagonal patterns in the Navajo Sandstone are called cross-bedding. Cross-beds are found in modern active sand dunes, but the Navajo Sandstone preserves the history of ancient wind patterns and migrating sand dunes in this vast desert. Cross-beds dip downward in the direction the winds were blowing. 1

Various photography bloggers have shared photography tips of this arch. One is to photograph this arch during the “Strawberry” full moon in the months of June and July. Others state to photograph during the sunset and night in the months of June to August when the Milky Way aligns to appear inside the arch.

Another nearby arch (with a controversial name) is ‘Margaret Arch.’ This arch was discovered (and named) by Barry Goldwater (B. 1/2/09 – D. 5/29/98), an Arizona Senator, who went exploring in the Tonalea area in the 1950s. There is speculation of a bronze plaque was that was  installed at Margaret Arch by the local chapter houses of Kaibeto or Tonalea. But to this day, no one has seen this plaque with a name dedication.

1. https://www.nps.gov/zion/learn/nature/navajo.htm – Navajo Sandstone in Zion National Park and the Colorado Plateau.

DIRECTIONS

From Page, Arizona

Drive south on Highway 89 until you reach the intersection with Route 160 (road to Tuba City). Drive 32.2 miles on Route 160 to the intersection with Indian Route 21 (GPS location 36.31943 N, 110.94745 W). Take paved Indian Route 21 about 14.4 miles to (36.4949 N, 111.05358 W) and turn right onto Indian Route 6260. Take Indian Route 6260 for 6.2 miles to (36.50019 N, 110.94505 W) and turn right. Stay on Indian Route 6260 for 1.7 miles to (36.47723 N, 110.93675 W) and turn right onto a good dirt road. After 1.6 miles you will reach a farm house at (36.469649 N, 110.961304 W), pass it on the left. Continue 0.5 miles to an open area and park at (36.472935 N, 110.970187 W). You will need a high clearance vehicle to drive the last two miles. The arch itself is clearly visible to the northwest. The east side of the arch can be reached via a short hike.

White Mesa Arch on Instagram

Hotels Nearby

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QUALITY INN AT LAKE POWELL

287 North Lake Powell Boulevard, Page, Arizona 86040
Check-In: 3pm  Check-Out: 11am
Direct Ph. (928) 645-8851

GOULDINGS LODGE AT MONUMENT VALLEY

ReserveOnlineButton1000 Main Street, Oljato-Monument Valley, Utah 84536
Check-In: 2pm  Check-Out: 11am  
Direct Ph. (435) 727-3231

THE VIEW HOTEL – IN MONUMENT VALLEY TRIBAL PARKReserveOnlineButton

Indian Route 42, Oljato-Monument Valley, Arizona 84536
(Located in Monument Valley Tribal Park – Requires admission of $20 per vehicle (max. 4 ppl), and $6/additional person)
Check-In: 3pm  Check-Out: 11am

HAMPTON INN – KAYENTA​ReserveOnlineButton

US Highway 160, Kayenta, Arizona 86033
Check-In: 4pm  Check-Out: 11am
Direct Ph. (928) 697-3170

KAYENTA MONUMENT VALLEY INNReserveOnlineButton

US Highway 160, Kayenta, Arizona 86033
Check-In: 3pm  Check-Out: 12pm
Direct Ph. (928) 697-3221 or Toll-Free 1-866-306-5458

WETHERILL INNReserveOnlineButton

1000 Main Street (US Highway 163), Kayenta, Arizona 86033
Check-In: 3pm Check-Out: 11am
Direct Ph. (928) 697-323

Arizona Standard Time (during the spring/summer, they are an hour behind).

DINÉ INN MOTEL – TUBA CITY

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322 – Highway 160 and Peshlakai Ave., Tuba City, Arizona 86045
Check-In: 4pm  Check-Out: 11am
Direct Ph. (928) 283-6107

NOT AVAILABLE FOR ONLINE BOOKING
Please call the phone # 928-283-6107 for BOOKING INFORMATION & ARRANGEMENTS

10 North Main Street, Tuba City, Arizona 86045
Check-In: 3pm  Check-Out: 11am
Direct Ph. (928) 283-4545

Places Nearby

ANTELOPE POINT MARINAANTELOPE POINT MARINA

Just 3 miles away is our Antelope Point Marina! The Antelope Point Marina houses the largest floating restaurant in the United States! There are several restaurants to choose from: The Jádí To´oh Restaurant, Gramma Betty’s, and the SandBar. Cool off here because this is the spot to be during the summer months! You can also fish, rent a boat, rent watersports equipment and book a boat tour to Rainbow Bridge Arch!

RAINBOW BRIDGE NATIONAL MONUMENTRAINBOW BRIDGE NATIONAL MONUMENT

Rainbow Bridge is one of the world’s largest known natural bridges. The span has undoubtedly inspired people throughout time – from the neighboring American Indian tribes who consider Rainbow Bridge sacred, to the 85,000 people from around the world who visit it each year. Visit, call or use the website to contact the Antelope Point Marina to book a boat tour to the Rainbow Bridge! 

ANTELOPE HOGAN BED AND BREAKFAST

Antelope Hogan Bed and Breakfast is a Navajo-owned and operated company with the knowledge of traditional Navajo culture. The goal of Antelope Hogan Bed and Breakfast is to provide guests with the experience of lodging in a traditional Navajo hogan while being immersed in the culture that our ancestors created. 

THE NAVAJO VILLAGE HERITAGE CENTER

Come and enjoy a unique experience into a classic culture in the natural setting of Navajo families. Enjoy traditionally built hogans, storytelling, history, a weaving presentation, and Native American dancing to conclude the tour.

BLACK MESA TWIN CINEMAS (KAYENTA, AZ)

Located in Kayenta, Arizona in the same plaza that houses the Bashas and Ace Hardware stores! Drop in while you’re visiting overnight! Click on the link above for the latest listing and online purchase of tickets!

AGATHLA PEAK

This volcanic monolith towers 1,000+ feet over Highway 163 — 11 miles north of Kayenta, AZ. Please practice pedestrian & road traffic safety while photographing this wonder – the road is a vital transportation route for many residents.

NAVAJO NATIONAL MONUMENT

Approx. 20 miles west of Kayenta, AZ.

ANTELOPE CANYON – UPPER & LOWER

Located 122 miles west of Monument Valley, AZ and 8 miles east of Page, AZ.

ANTELOPE POINT MARINA

129 miles west of Monument Valley Tribal Park on Highway 163 to Highway 160, then turn onto Highway 98. Look for signs posted for entrance to Antelope Point Marina.

DENNEHOTSO MARKET PLACE

This newly built convienance store is located along Highway 160 in the small community of Dennehotso, Arizona. Stop by for gas, food or even take care of some laundry while you’re traveling through! Hint: the store is newly opened (February 15, 2019), it does not appear on Google or Apple maps yet.

TEEC NOS POS TRADING POST

Approximately 100 miles east of Monument Valley. A gas station, convienance store, jewelry store and overall trading post – in one spot. Stop by as it is a must-see!

FOUR CORNERS NAVAJO TRIBAL PARK

About 2 hours east via Highway 163 north into Utah, through Aneth, UT and southward to Highway 160 south. Signs are posted near the park entrance. Hours vary according to the season and credit/debit cards are accepted for entrance fee’s.

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Upcoming Events:

Apr
10
Sat
Crossing Between Worlds: Two Navajo Weddings – One Navajo Bride and Groom with Charles Winters @ ONLINE
Apr 10 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Crossing Between Worlds: Two Navajo Weddings – One Navajo Bride and Groom with Charles Winters
Saturday, April 10, 2021, 11:00 am – Arizona Time
Join Amerind for the free online lecture, Crossing Between Worlds: Two Navajo Weddings – One Navajo Bride and Groom with photographer Charles Winters. Winters will share the photographs he captured and discuss relationships he formed during a six-year project he undertook in the Canyon de Chelly community on the Navajo Nation.
Charles D. Winters, a photographer and cinematographer, photographed and taught photography at State University of New York in Oneonta, NY. His work has been exhibited widely most recently at the Amerind Museum and 3 books of his documentary photography have been published: “Too Wet to Plow: The Family Farm in Transition,” “The Catskills: Land in the Sky” and “Crossing Between Worlds: The Navajos of Canyon de Chelly.” Now retired, he lives in Bisbee, AZ.
This online program is free, but space is limited. To register visit: https://bit.ly/AmerindOnline041021
Apr
26
Mon
Navajo Nation Sovereignty Day @ Navajo Nation Reservation
Apr 26 all-day

Navajo Sovereignty Day

Many people would be surprised to discover that the United States has many nations within its borders. One of those nations is the Navajo Nation, a sovereign tribe of indigenous people whose nation is located in the southwestern part of the country. Navajo Sovereignty Day, which is on the fourth Monday in April, celebrates the day the Navajo Nation gained its independence from the U.S. government. READ MORE

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