The Pueblo Ruins of Chaco and Mesa Verde Country includes a stop at the Canyon of the Ancients National Monument // (c) 2011 Graeme Churchard // Flickr.com
The Pueblo Ruins of Chaco and Mesa Verde Country includes a stop at the Canyon of the Ancients National Monument // (c) 2011 Graeme Churchard // Flickr.com

Many of the national parks located in the southwestern USA, such as Chaco Culture National Historical Park, Mesa Verde National Park or Aztec Ruins National Monument, are distinctive for their stone dwellings built high into the rocky cliff walls.

The Pueblo Ruins of Chaco and Mesa Verde Country includes a stop at the Canyon of the Ancients National Monument // (c) 2011 Graeme Churchard // Flickr.com
The Pueblo Ruins of Chaco and Mesa Verde Country includes a stop at the Canyon of the Ancients National Monument // (c) 2011 Graeme Churchard // Flickr.com

Although these residences are known to have built by the Ancient Pueblo (Anasazi) people, who first inhabited the “Four Corners” area of the United States some 1,500 years ago, there is still much to learn about the history of this ancient people.

To that end, Crow Canyon Archaeological Center is dedicated to unraveling the history of the Pueblo people. Assisted by thousands of students and adults, Crow Canyon conducts excavations at more than 30 ancient sites, making discoveries that have contributed to important new ways of understanding Southwestern archaeology.

Pueblo Ruins of Chaco and Mesa Verde Country
Among the landscapes of southwestern Colorado and northwestern New Mexico, ancient ruins reveal new evidence about the ancestral Pueblo people, commonly known as the Anasazi. Trip highlights include Chaco Canyon, Mesa Verde, and Aztec Ruins, as well as sites in Ute Mountain Ute Tribal Park and Canyons of the Ancients National Monument. Guests will also tour Crow Canyon’s current multiyear excavation, featured on the PBS series Time Team America.

The program begins and ends in Durango, Colorado, and takes takes place at elevations between 5000 and 8000 feet above sea level. All travel is by van on rural roads, with long sections of gravel and dirt road in Chaco Canyon. The pace is somewhat leisurely, but participants must be comfortable hiking and standing for several hours at a time.

The program runs September 14–19, 2014; rates start from $1,895 per person.

Crow Canyon Archaeological Center
800.422.8975
www.crowcanyon.org