Your Diné Guides

Jon and Lupita McClanahan are members of the Diné (Navajo) tribe. They are Native Americans. The Diné tribe is the largest Indian tribe in the United States. Jon and Lupita reside in the heart of the Diné Reservation. They live in a special and sacred place called Tsegi, Canyon de Chelly. Canyon de Chelly is where we traditional Diné still believe the Holy People live. The Holy People are the creators of the Universe. The canyon is blessed with many gifts and treasures. One of these gifts is the beauty of age-old innocence. Many priceless treasures were painted a long time ago on the canvas of red sandstone. Many different cultures have left footprints in the grains of sand that were picked up by the wind people and carried into the canyon walls. We still believe that we are part of the canyon.

The land they live on has been passed down from generation to generation They believe the Holy People (Time of the beginning) instructed the Diné where to live.

Lupita has four clans. Every Diné has to know their four clans, that is their identity. 1st clan, which is her Mother's clan is Towering House. 2nd clan which is her father's clan is Bigwater. 3rd clan which is her maternal grandfather's clan is Coyote Pass. 4th clan which is her paternal grandfather's clan is Tangle Clan. Jon's 1st clan is Bitter Water and his 2nd clan is Salt

In the past she worked as a park ranger and for "Trees for Mother Earth." Lupita also worked as a substitute teacher and Navajo culture instructor in Tsaile, Arizona for many years.

Jon, Lupita's husband, helped her found the tour company and is an authorized guide. They are both canyon residents.

Jon's thoughts and visions are that one day canyon residents receive their share of Canyon de Chelly treasures. Since the holy people, canyon residents have been working the land not for themselves but for all grandchildren.

"We need to preserve and protect our culture and stories. We therefore must preserve and protect the canyon resident's way of life. This is what Canyon de Chelly is all about and what tourists from around the world want to see and experience. It's not a jeep ride, but getting out, smelling the flowers, feeling the cold mud between your toes, seeing the birth of Mother Earth's elegance and splendor. Touching her face with your fingers and once again experiencing the humbleness of your inner child."

- Jon McClanahan

 Lupita and Jon

Lupita and Jon McClanahan


Lupita's Parents Susie and Kenneth


Extended Family