Apr 15 - Anasazi Heritage Center

  • Explored the Anasazi Heritage Center near Dolores, CO
  • Toad Miles Today: 24
  • Total Toad Miles Spring12:  380
  • Tonight's camp: Sundance RV Park in Cortez, CO.
  • Weather: morning low 33;  afternoon high 54; morning clouds and showers gave way to more sun in afternoon.
  • Notables: 1. Studied Ancient Puebloan Civilization at the Anasazi Heritage Center this afternoon. 2. After two pretty dreary days, seeing the sun again.
  • Link to photo album for today

After a slow Sunday morning and a few more rain/snow showers, things started to dry out about noon. There were still a couple showers visible off in the distance, looking like misty waterfalls under dark clouds surrounded by a sun-lit landscape... but it wasn't enough to keep us confined to quarters any longer. Starting tomorrow, the rest of the weather week looks great.

Late morning we drove north about 12 miles to near the town of Delores, CO. where we found the Anasazi Heritage Center. Built as part of the McPhee Reservoir Project in the 1980s, this building and the surrounding grounds are managed by the BLM and also serve as the visitor center for the Canyons of the Ancients National Monument.

When stopping for the first time in an area, a National Park, Monument, or similar, we find value in getting the "survey course" information at the visitor center... the orientation films, the exhibits, and learn as much as we can about the history and science of the area... before venturing into the field. The Four Corners area of the USA is loaded with archaeological sites relating to the Ancient Puebloans that lived and prospered in this area a thousand years ago, and this is a great resource for the knowledge-hungry explorer.

The other valuable thing we get from these visitor centers is the knowledge and recommendations from those who know... those who work here... those familiar with the area. "That road requires a high-clearance vehicle"  or "This hike will take an average person 4 hours to complete."... it's good stuff to help get the most out of a limited time in the Park... and to help keep you out of trouble.

We were there for almost three hours, and carried home a thick stack of information and maps to pour over during the next day. We have our introduction. Now, over the next two days, we'll get into the field and put a few miles on the hiking boots.

Slightly Better than Most