Mesa Verde National Park, Part 1: Cliff Palace and Balcony House

Mesa Verde is best known for its cliff dwellings. In fact, these dwellings are what people generally conjure up when discussing the Ancestral Puebloan culture (or the Anasazi as many people still refer… Continue reading

Aztec Ruins, New Mexico

From Chaco Canyon I drove back north to Aztec Ruins, a large great house site that contains a reconstructed kiva where visitors are permitted to sit inside. This site flourished concurrently with Chaco… Continue reading

Chaco Canyon, Part 3: Casa Rinconada, The Autumnal Equinox, and Petroglyphs

The great kiva at Casa Rinconada is the largest in the canyon at 63 feet in diameter and is unusual in that it is not incorporated in any great houses, has a 39… Continue reading

Chaco Canyon, Part 2: Pueblo Alto Trail, the Famous Pueblo Bonito, and a Moonlight Tour

Chaco Canyon, in addition to being the home of some amazing ruins, also happens to be a fantastically beautiful place. The Ancestral Puebloan people believed that this was their “center place,” a sacred… Continue reading

Chaco Canyon, Part 1: Una Vida, Hungo Pavi, Chetro Ketl, Kin Kletso, and Pueblo de Arroyo

Chaco Canyon was the heart of the ancient Puebloan culture, the epicenter of religious, social, and economic life in the region between the late 800s to early 1100s AD. More than a dozen… Continue reading

Salmon Ruins, New Mexico

From Chimney Rock I drove to the Salmon Ruins, which lies along the San Juan River near Farmington, New Mexico. The first phase of construction here in 1068 – 1072 AD was limited… Continue reading

Chimney Rock National Monument, Colorado

Welcome to Archaeology Week! After visiting the Great Sand Dunes, I headed towards something marked in my atlas as “Chimney Rock Archaeological Area,” which is as of this year officially a national monument.… Continue reading

Great Sand Dunes National Park. Or, Sand in My Shoes. And My Pack. And My Shorts (?).

The National Park Service takes their resource stewardship very, very seriously and reminds visitors through ample signage not to remove or tamper with any objects, animals, or property. So I owe the NPS… Continue reading

Garden of the Gods, Colorado

After leaving Rachel at the airport, I headed south from Denver trying to get away from the rain. I was heartened as the dawn fog burned off and the morning quickly became sunny.… Continue reading

Denver Days: Downtown Aquarium and the Denver Art Museum

After determining that we wouldn’t be able to both outrun the widespread storm and the flooding – which had shut down an incredible number of roads, including interstates – and be able to… Continue reading