Magazine article Sunset

Red Rock Road Trip

Magazine article Sunset

Red Rock Road Trip

Article excerpt

"How do you approach a place you've seen a hundred times in movies and ads and still see it new?" That was the question I posed to Los Angeles bureau staff writer Matt Jaffe when he set out to write a story about Monument Valley.

Star of nine John Ford movies (Stagecoach, The Searchers, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon) and countless automobile ads, Monument Valley seems so familiar, yet some people we asked couldn't name the states it is in (see below).

Matt's reply: "The main thing is not to let yourself get too caught up in the grandeur of the place. I want to talk to the people who live there. After all, this is not a national parkit's a Navajo tribal park, and people still live and work there."

Part of Matt's access was provided by a vintage orange Chevy Blazer (with 940,000 miles on it) that his friend and fellow traveler, photographer Tom Gamache, drove on the dirt roads.

The truck was a conversation starter: Matt got to know a lot of folks when they stopped to make comments about it. …

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