23390 Road K
Cortez, Colorado, 81321
Phone: (970)565.8975 or (800)422.8975
One Hour Free Tour (Wednesdays Only)
End of May thru end of September, Crow Canyon conducts a one hour free tour, on Wednesday mornings, of the Research Institute, and pithouse, to give you the ins and outs of what it is to be an archaeologist of the Southwest. There are all sorts of other educational, and hands on, programs offered, so go to the website listed above to get more information.
We went on the last Wednesday of September 2016, got the bonus of a one and a half hour tour, and were exhilarated the entire day on what we had experienced. This was extremely meaningful to me as I had studied many courses in archaeology and anthropology in college, before being discouraged from continuing in these fields. The staff, archaeologists and volunteers are awesome people; friendly, helpful, and passionate about Crow Canyon.
First off, how to find Crow Canyon; the road begins north of Cortez, Highway 491 (west side); Road L for 2.2 miles, make a left onto Road K and the parking area is 4/10ths of a mile. From the parking area, walk down to the trail and there will be an information board with map to help get you to the Research Institute.
Along the way you'll pass by Indian Camp Ranch which is a development for those with loads of money to spend. Interesting to look at, but it's not the end of your destination.
Follow the pathway to the Research Institute.
|Crow Canyon Info Board and Map|
|Something to see along the pathway.|
|Slender Blanketflower (Aster family)|
The first building you'll pass by is The Lodge; day programs include lunch at this location; it's a peaceful place and you're encouraged to sit on the porch to enjoy the serenity.
|Yucca and Rabbit Brush|
|Scenic Pond Across the Way|
The next building is the Research Institute where you can check in; it also houses the library, archives, labs, offices for staff and archaeologists. There is a very comfy sitting area to relax in; or check out all the wall displays throughout, including publications produced by Crow Canyon.
The one hour tour begins outside at the Pithouse; this is from the Anasazi culture whose descendants of this area are Hopi, Zuni, Ute and Navajo. Tribal members have been very helpful with giving information towards Crow Canyon's discoveries. This Pithouse is about a foot below ground level with the entrance/exit through the roof. The front entrance on this recreation is to allow easier access for visitors; inside are typical findings: fire pit, cradle board, pottery, grinding stones, animal skins, even a fan made of bird feathers for the fire pit.
Let me introduce you to our tour guide, Carol Taylor; she is a volunteer at Crow Canyon, extremely knowledgeable, will gladly answer questions. and does an amazing job.
There is much more to Crow Canyon, and all will be experienced with one of the all day programs. By the way, remember to watch your step, you never know who you may step on....like the home of diligent ants, or a collared lizard.
|Active Ant Hill|
On the way back to the Research Institute, we passed Hogan-like buildings where folks stay when doing an extended stay at Crow Canyon. We passed a couple of Adobe ovens, and I forgot to ask if they do any cooking classes with these.
Back inside, Carol took us on a tour of the various labs in the lower level. There is a wonderful display on the wall, as you go downstairs, for the "Atlatl"; and Carol gave us a demonstration inside Lab #1.
|Pursiane Seed Project|
|White Apparition Ascends Stairs.|
|A Second Later, It is Gone.|
If you are truly interested in Southwestern Archaeology, seriously consider taking any of the wonderful programs Crow Canyon offers. If you're not certain, take the free tour; and who knows, perhaps a spirit will give its blessing.