If These Walls Could Talk... They would tell you that for nearly 5,000 years, people have lived in these canyons - longer than anyone has lived uninterrupted anywhere on the Colorado Plateau. Their homes and images tell us their stories. Today, Navajo families make their homes, raise livestock, and farm the lands in the canyon. The National Park Service and Navajo Nation are actively working together to manage park resources.
I didn't mind this hike, My wife on the other hand would not rate it very high, I would put this on the "hard" end of easy, especially if you do it in some heat, coming up can be rough in the heat, very little shade if any. Definitely enjoyable going down, once in the canyon, it's ok. My wife did not like the Indian sellers you have to walk by to see the ruins, or the fact you are kept a pretty good distance away from them, with an ugly steel fence between you & the ruins (not great for pictures). It is the only way to see the canyon without hiring a guide, so from that perspective, to me it's kinda a must do unless you happy taking pictures from the overlooks looking down
Steep descent/ascent. Varied trail, but mostly slick rock. Some sections with sheer drop offs. Be smart: water, hat, sunscreen...DUH!! Gorgeous views, lots of folks on the trail, horses down at the water, petroglyphs, ruins and Navajo artisans. Worthwhile hike.
Hiked from Bat Cave Canyon down into Canyon de Chelly. Past Spider Rock and Face Rock. Saw lots of pictographs and petroglyphs, as well as ruins and pottery shards. Wonderful and awe-inspiring. Climbed out at Sliding House Ruins. Kudos to Benjamin, my Navajo guide, who ALSO took me up Canyon del Muerte the next day.