Home > Traveling > Mesa Verde National Park

Mesa Verde National Park


Mesa Verde is best known for cliff dwellings, which are structures built within caves and under outcroppings in cliffs.  They were occupied by the Anasazi indians from about 700 to 1300.   There was a 24 year drought (beginning in 1274) and the native population moved away, leaving villages and cliff dwellings.

The Anasazi were well known for their pottery and basket weaving.  They left a rich history of an age now almost forgotten.  We were privileged to visit this site, which was set aside as a National Park by President Roosevelt in 1904.

A corn grinding room

A corn grinding room

Looking inside one of the kivas

Looking inside one of the kivas

Some decorations at the entry to a Kiva

Some decorations at the entry to a Kiva

They built all the way up to the roof

They built all the way up to the “roof”

 Must take a lot of work

Must take a lot of work

 Inside a cliff dwelling kiva

Looking inside a cliff dwelling kiva

 The structure was quite advanced

There are rooms below the floor, climb the ladder to get down

 A lot of work went into these, especially since materials were hard to find

A lot of work went into these, everything had to be carried in

  1. Beth Hayes
    September 25, 2013 at 6:48 pm

    You are traveling where I grew up. Mesa Verde was in my back yard when I was in high school. I worked there in the summer between my college semesters. The park was expanded and developed shortly after my college years. It is an interesting place to visit, and is a must-see for traveling families. It can be explored and enjoyed in many ways by those who can do no more than visit the museum, by those who spend the day hiking into areas of the ruins, or by those who want to do more intensive camping and exploring. The scenery and wildlife alone are worth the trip, but imagining what it was like for the Anasazi who lived there centuries ago is fascinating. Thanks for sharing the great photos.

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