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What is the Four Corners Area?

Many traditional Navajo live within the boundaries of Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, an area along the Arizona-Utah border than is known for its striking beauty.
map of the United States.
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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 26 July 2014
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The Four Corners area is a region in the United States where four states meet at a precise point, which is marked with a brass plaque. It is located in the Southwest, where Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Arizona meet; in addition to marking the intersection of four states, the Four Corners area also meets up with boundaries from two Indian tribes, the Navajo and the Ute Mountain Indians, so technically there are six corners at Four Corners.

Tourists traveling in the region often like to stop by Four Corners, because it's an interesting spot to visit. The site hosts the Four Corners Monument, which features state flags and other artifacts of interest in addition to the brass plaque which marks the spot where the four states meet. The Four Corners Monument is administered by the Navajo Nation, and a variety of Native American crafts can be found for sale at the site, including some very fine examples of Navajo artistry.

The first marker at the site was put up in 1912, and it was refurbished in 1992 to celebrate the history of the site and its uniqueness in the United States. Because of the way the United States was surveyed and broken up, this is the only location where four states meet up in a single point, making it a rather remarkable spot. Several states have their own individual baby four corners sites, where four counties meet up.

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The region around Four Corners is quite rural, and it can get extremely hot in the summer. Visitors are encouraged to wear lightweight clothing and sunscreen, and it's a good idea to bring water and snacks, as amenities are often limited. Bringing a camera is essential, as many people feel that the best thing about visiting Four Corners is bringing back pictures of the site.

People are encouraged to stand on the Four Corners plaque, and many people like to perform silly acrobatics so that they end up with a limb in each state. The surrounding area is also quite attractive, as it is located in the high desert, so when people tire of the novelty of being in four states at once, they can hike, picnic, and bike in the surrounding region to enjoy the natural beauty of the Southwest.

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Discuss this Article

Emilski
Post 3

@JimmyT - I agree this is definitely not the place to book an entire vacation around, but it must be kept in mind that this is a very unique place to stop off for a vacation as there are really no places quite like it in the world.

What I find to be very interesting is that this place is so geographically unique in that there are not mountain ranges or rivers as boundaries, but simply straight lines that meet at one point.

This is something that is highly unusual when carving out territories as physical landmarks usually determine what is the proper place for someone to stake claim.

This is what I find to be most unique with the area as straight lines like this are rarely especially for four states coming together at a single point.

JimmyT
Post 2

I have to say that as someone that likes to visit interesting and unique places while travelling across the country, this is one place that is a must stop on ones travels. However, this place is also definitely not something to book an entire vacation around and is instead something that should just be considered a stop off.

One thing that I did while I visited this area was too look around at the mountains and just take the day to relax while I continued my travel to the Grand Canyon as well as the west coast on my way to Los Angeles.

jadesmith
Post 1

Pay three dollars and you get admission to the only point where the boundaries of four US states (Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah) hit each other. If you are interested in geographical points like that and like taking the famous "standing-in-four-states-in-one-moment" shots, then this place is a must-go, I have to admit.

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