Utah 2001
Utah 2001
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Mesa Verde National Park
Monday, January 8, 2001

After leaving Moab, we drive to the Needles Overlook, a viewpoint high above the Needles District of Canyonlands National Park. The plateau below us is stretching out for miles until it fades into the haze at the horizon. After taking pictures of the panorama in all directions (270 view!), we drive on to Mesa Verde National Park.

The Needles Overlook The Needles Overlook The Needles Overlook

We arrive there shortly after noon but notice that most of the facilities and sights are closed for the season. So, we just take a 6-mile loop drive along the rim of a canyon. Along the roadside are the ruins of Anasazi houses from 600-1300 A.D. Some are primitive pit houses, not more than a hole in the ground that used to have a wooden roof; some are complex pueblos built on in rock alcoves in the canyon walls.

Pit house Pit house Sun temple
Cliff settlement Cliff settlement Cliff settlement

Nils takes a one-hour guided tour to one of the settlements nestled into the cliffs.

Cliff house Cliff house Cliff house
Ladder to lower level Pit house Hand mill stones

At 5 pm already, we drive into Cortez to get some dinner and check into our motel - a really slow day indeed!

01/07/2001 | 01/09/2001 >

© 2001-2003 Matthias Book (Text), Nils Grunwald (Photos)