Mesa Verde National Park

Mesa Verde National Park
Mesa Verde National Park contains the largest and most important archeological preservation
of Native American culture in the USA. The Anasazi or “ancient ones” populated this area
from 500 AD to 1300 AD.They originally occupied the tops of the mesas,wich provided some
natural protecion from their enemies.As their culture developed,the learned to build elaborate
fortified communal dwellings on sheltered niches in the cliffs.The ruins of many such ancient
cliff-side cities are preserved at Mesa Verde National Park.
These ancient were abandoned around 1300 AD when a prolonged drought devastated the
area.It is believed that the Pueblo and Hopi tribes presently living in Arizona and New
Mexico are descendants.
Mesa Verde is in southwestern Colorado
Mesa Verde National Park is lokated in the southwestern corner of Colorado near the borders
with Utah, Arizona and New Mexico. The park is 10 miles east of Cortez and 30 miles west
of Durango. Access to the park requires a steep climb from the highway (US 160) up to the
top of the mesa. Admission to the park is $5 per vehcile or $2 per individual.
Geography
Mesa Verde National Park is lockated in the lower South-Western corner of the state of
Colorado 37° 11’02 “N 108° 29’19“W (37.183784,-108.488687).
Elevations in the park range from about 6.100 feet to about 8.400 feet.The terrain in much of
the park is dominated by ridges peak at an east-west crest near the park’s northern border
wich turns more northerly-southerly towards the park entrance.The northernmost point is 13.2
miles farther north than southernmost; the westwenmost point is 11.9 miles farther west than
thw easternmost.

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