Kent and Carol - Mobile travel blog


Carol and Sadie standing on the Four Corners

Far View at Far View Visitor Center

Cliff Palace from the observation point

Down at Cliff Palace

One of the ladders out of Cliff Palace

Ranger showing us how to climb into Balcony House

Looking thru window of Balcony House

Tunnel inside Balcony House

Ladder out of Balcony House

Steps and ladder out of Balcony House

Thursday, April 30, we left Farmington, NM and headed west to the Four Corners Monument. This is where the four states meet and it is on an Indian Reservation so they charge $3 each to enter the Monument. Around the monument are some stalls where Indian craftsman sell their wares. Carol found a couple of items she liked and bought. One item was a very unique and pretty necklace. We then drove on into Cortez, Colorado. Nice to see some more trees and mountains. We parked at the LaMasa RV Park. Friday we drove the Jeep a few miles to the Mesa Verde National Park. As soon as you turn off US 160 Hwy, you start to climb in altitude. It is a 15-mile switchback road to the top of the mesa where the visitor center is located. It is called the Far View Visitor Center and boy can you see a far view. I bought tickets to visit the Cliff Palace and the Balcony House ruins. We drove another 6 miles to the Spruce Tree area and had lunch at the restaurant there. We then drove another 4 miles to the site of the Cliff Palace ruins, which is the most famous and largest of the ruins. Carol waited at the observation point while I took the ranger-led tour. It was quite a trip down and then a pretty tough climb up ladders, stairs and then ladders again. It was very interesting and the ranger spent most of the hour tour talking about the living conditions of the Ancestral Puebloans in the early 1200s. They then left the area and again they are not sure why they left the area. Carol and I then drove a short distance for the 3:00pm tour of the Balcony House. Carol again waited up top while I took the ranger-led tour down below. This tour is a little more strenuous than Cliff Palace because there is a small tunnel you must crawl through and taller ladders to climb. It was a very interesting tour. There are several others places to visit in this park but it was about 4:15 and we had a long white-knuckle drive (for Carol) down out of the park. Tomorrow, Saturday, we drive to Durango, CO.

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