Anasazi Heritage Center / Cayons of the Ancients
Trip Start Aug 12, 2013
47Trip End Oct 02, 2013
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I headed for the Anasazi Heritage Center in Dolores, Colorado today. It's part of the Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, which is near, and surrounds much of, Hovenweep National Monument. The road I had trouble with yesterday was actually on Canyons of the Ancients land.
The Anasazi Heritage Center was built to house the artifacts collected from the archaeological sites excavated before they were flooded due to the construction of a dam created the McPhee Reservior. It also serves as the Visitor Center for Canyons of the Ancients. Canyons of the Ancients contains up to 100 archaeological sites per square mile and over 6,000 recorded sites. Unfortunately, there are almost no roads and even fewer paved roads. Most of the sites that have been excavated were backfilled when the archaeologists were through. There are only a few sites that are accessible and have much to see. Although Hovenweep became a national monument in 1923 it wasn't until 2000 that Canyons of the Ancients National Monument was created.
I went through the exhibits at the museum. They do a good job of explaining the ancestral Puebloan history and have a good collection of artifacts. There is hiking trail from the museum to an excavated site but the trail was closed for repairs today. I was planning on driving to another site but as I toured the museum I could hear thunder. I wasn't interested in repeating yesterday's experience so I took my time and spent the rest of the day at the museum.
After the museum I headed for That'za Pizza in Cortez, CO. I had a great pizza there several years ago. I went to see if they could repeat the performance. It was good but not as good as I remember.