Petrified Forest National Park
Petrified Forest National Park, United States
Petrified Forest National Park Reviews
Interesting what the Forces of Nature have done to the Trees of the Forest Jun 10, 2011
My rating of cheap is based on the fact that I have a 1 year pass for all National Parks, Forests and Monuments under the US Forest and National Parks Service. Last year for $89, I bought a pass that would cost over $240 if one bought a monthly pass to all parks and even more for a daily pass to individual parks. Which means, we paid $7.41 per month for entry to any national park/ forest in the United States. Native Indian reservations are not part of the National Parks service, so this pass is limiting when it comes to entering the Navajo Nation for example. For as much as I travel, it was worth it. It is this pass that allowed me and my family to enter the Petrified Forest National Park, normally one would pay $20 for a 12 month pass to just this one park, $10 for a 7 day pass for private vehicles or &5 per person for 7 days.
My family and I, arrived in Holbrook the night of June 09/2011 and decided to do a morning tour of the park starting at the north entrance. Interesting what the forces of nature have done to the trees of the forest. The trees are rock hard with minerals that have formulated million of years in the making. In 1906 the park was said to have been set aside as a preserved lot because of the petrified wood. Apparently the woods are of scientific value. It officially became a National Park in 1962, it has the largest number of petrified wood I have ever seen in my life, the colors are quite enchanting, quite the photo opportunity provider for a photographer.
Now of course when one talks of a forest, one expects to find a forest. But no, the Petrified forest is not exactly a forest, it it was, it was many lost years ago. We drove over 20 miles and found just a few concentrated areas of the petrified wood. The larger land mass is really bear. The north entrance is mostly filled with grand geological formations, while the south entrance has the petrified wood. Driving across the land, there were stop/ view points of interest including; Tawa point, Kachina Point, Puerco Pueblo point, Newspaper rock which we did not stop at, Blue Mesa point, the Agate Bridge point, Jasper forest point, and the Long Log Trails which we hiked last. By the time we hiked it, the heat was high and we were feeling dehydrated.
You can find accommodation within the park, but it is much more expensive than finding one in Holbrook which is about 30 minutes drive away.
Price: Yearly pass is advisable, but one can purchase a one week pass for $5 or a single vehicle pass for $10/ day.
PS: “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” Mark Twain
Part of the 2011 Travels & Adventures! travel blog
Part of the list Arizona's Top 5 National Parks
4 / 4 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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Beautiful views, quiet location Apr 17, 2010
Well, it was free when we turned up, hence the rating. We arrived on a go free to National Parks day (Can't remember the exact term) which was a result and can't remember how much it actually was normally but can remember thinking that it wasn't expensive.
SO there we were, 4 English lads on a trip across the states looking for parties and beer, mainly. So you wouldn't expect us to enjoy 'The Petrified Forest'. When we were planning our route we saw this on our map of the states and made jokes about it. Little realizing what the name meant.
But we weren't let down when we went there. The park was a drive through/park affair with little room for walking about, unless you were on designated paths. Too many people over the years had stolen a lot of Petrified wood (which is basically rocks) from the park meaning they have to be a bit stricter now on where people can go.
But the stop off areas have some truly amazing views without hordes of people blocking the view. The road your on is the parks, so to speak, so the roads were deadly quiet. The route snakes around one side of the I40 and then crosses over to the other side with equally spectacular views.
This was when I decided I wanted to get out of the car and walk about a bit. We were driving a stretch of road where eventually you had to turn around and come back again so I'd arranged with the guys to go up to the next vantage point and swing by and pick me up on the way back. I'd only be alone for about 15 minutes and was only going to be walking the road side but still wanted to listen to the peace and quiet for a while. 4 blokes in a car on holiday can get a bit loud!
So I hit the road and within 30 seconds of the guys driving off I was in total silence...It was beautiful. The views were just as stunning as the vantage points and it was good to get up close to the nature of the place. There was chunks of Petrified wood all over the place once you started looking and I can see now why people stole so much when it appeared to be in such abundance. But however tempting it was I didn't steal any. My conscience was rewarded when about a minute later a park ranger came along in his car and quizzed who the hell I was being out here by myself on foot.
Once I explained who I was he guessed who I was with and slated the driver of our car for not getting out to have a look around at the vantage point ahead. We had a brief chat about the forest and then about military service (Him being ex and me with a little experience). Basically I think he was just sizing me up seeing if I was a cunning robber or not...he went with not.
It was at this time that my mates came back down the road and picked me up. The ranger followed us to the next stops but I don't think this was malicious, he was just doing the rounds.
Every single stop we went to the views were just amazing. In some you could get face to face with the rocks, in others you could just see onto the horizon. There were ancient graffiti markings on some of the rocks which we hadn't been expecting and I'd say overall we all enjoyed it. I'd recommend going to see this place. Granted, there isn't anything much else to do. There is a shop and restaurant at the start of the trail which we visited (nice food). But sometimes you don't need a lot in your life. Sometimes it's nice just to sit back, relax and enjoy the view.
Part of the America 2010 travel blog
Petrified Forest National Park May 14, 2008
Petrified Forest National Park in Arizona is not one the most visited and popular National Parks in the U. S. Out in the middle of one of the most deserted areas of Arizona it would be so easy to drive right on past it. But this is one place where you can see some truly amazing sights. Not just a few trees that have turned to stone, and there are way more than you’d ever expect, but some of the prettiest stone and layering you’d ever like to see. The visitors center and museum at the entrance just off I-40 give you an opportunity to learn more before you drive through the park. There are several areas that each give different and unique things to see. From the painted desert, Newspaper Rock, Blue Mesa, and Agate Bridge.
Part of the Roadtrip across the US travel blog
Part of the list State & National Parks & Monuments we have Visited.
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
Jun 20, 2006
PM (PST): (J) At the conclusion of my last entry we decided to go to the
Petrified Wood National Park in Arizona. Included in the 28 miles of sprawl
which was the PWNP was the painted desert, more petroglyphs and lots of
petrified wood which resembles rock. I was pulled over for doing 61 in a 45,
but I didn't realize the rangers were behind me for almost 2 miles and then
just jumped out of the car at the next spot. The rangers said they felt like
big city cops in a chase. Oops, but thank God they let me off with a warning
and that my car won't allow speeding or else that may not have been the first
time or a warning.
After we picked up some souvenirs at the park hobby shop we drove straight
through to Williams, Arizona and stayed at the Grand
Canyon Country Inn.
Part of the Cross Country 2006 travel blog
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