Mesa Verde National Park

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Written by bike posted on Thursday, February 4th, 2010

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Colorado’s Mesa Verde National Park offers vacationers a chance to go back in time and get a sense of the lives of the Pueblo people who lived here for more than 700 years, from A.D. 600 to A.D. 1300.

Ancient city at Mesa Verde National Park (NPS Photo).


This park protects more than 4,000 known archeological sites, and some 600 cliff dwellings. These are possibly of the most important and best preserved archelogical sites in the United States, and an important part of the Rockies.
Camping and lodging info: The Morefield Campground is open from mid-April through mid-October for tents and trailers. No reservations. Basic sites are $16 per night, hook-up sites are $25 per night (limited availability). Morefield has restrooms, all sites have tables, benches and grills. Lodging is available at Far View Lodge, which is closed in winter. Call 970-565-2133 or 800-449-2288 for reservations.
Hours: The Far View Visitor Center is open only during the summer from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.. The Chapin Mesa Museum is open from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. during the summer and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., the rest of the year. The museum and Spruce Tree House cliff dwelling are open all year. The Cliff Palace and Balcony House ruins are closed from mid-October to mid-April, depending on weather. The Wetherill Mesa ruins are open from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
General info: The Mesa Verde National Park entrance is midway between Cortez and Mancos on US 160. Vehicles are allowed only on roads, turnouts and parking areas. Hiking is restricted to marked trails. Mountain bikes are not permitted.

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