MESA VERDE NATIONAL PARK, CO
Upper Navajo Canyon HikeCliff Dwelling Tour
4 hr. 00 min.
Notice:Upper Navajo Canyon Hike tour is available from September 5, 2013 to October 5, 2013 on Thursdays and Saturdays.
Directions: From the park entrance, drive 15 miles (24km) to the Far View Terrace Restaurant parking lot. Meet and check in with the ranger at the south end of the parking lot. Drive time from the park entrance is 45 minutes. From there, the group will caravan to the parking area near the trailhead. Meet the ranger at the parking lot no later than 8:15 am.
Enjoy the autumn weather and fall color as you hike this historic trail, built in the 1930s by a Depression era organization, the Public Works Administration. You will view Pinkley House and several other small alcove sites, and experience two different communities as you descend from the drier mesa top pinyon-juniper woodlands to the mountain chaparral in the canyon bottom.
This moderate 4-hour, ~4-mile (6.4 km) round-trip hike is along an unpaved, uneven trail that descends 760 feet (232m), includes steep drop-offs, and switchbacks. Wear sturdy hiking shoes or boots, bring snacks, and a minimum of ½-gallon (2 liters) of water per person. Shade is very limited, so bring a hat and sunscreen. Consider bringing binoculars and bird books, as well. This hike is appropriate for well-prepared hikers of any age. Children must be able to walk the extent of the trail on their own without difficulty. Upper Navajo Canyon Hike is available from September 5 to October 5 on Thursday's and Saturday's at 8:30 am. Meet the ranger for your hike at least 15 minutes in advance.
Know Before You Go
Consider your physical health before joining a hike, especially if you have heart or respiratory problems, or other physical difficulties. Elevations range between 7,000 and 7,500 feet (2134m and 2286m) above sea level. You should plan for all weather possibilities because weather conditions are quite variable. It's possible to begin your hike in full sun and end with a thunderstorm or snowstorm.
Mesa Verde National Park has accessibility limitations for people with vision, hearing or mobility impairments. Visitors encounter rugged terrain at an elevation of 7,000 to 8,500 feet. Steep cliffs, deep canyons and narrow trails can be a danger to all visitors. Persons with heart or respiratory ailments may have breathing problems at this altitude. Wheelchairs with wide rim wheels are recommended on trails
General information is provided below. For a more detailed explanation, use the following links:
Spruce Tree Terrace Café: Located in a historic building near the Chapin Mesa Archaeological Museum and Spruce Tree House, this is a perfect place for a casual lunch or dinner. Dine inside, on the outdoor patio, or pick up a lunch-to-go and enjoy a picnic in the park. Open daily, year-round. Hours of operation vary seasonally. You may contact them directly at (970) 529-4521.
Metate Room Restaurant: Enjoy dinner in the nationally recognized Metate Room at Far View Lodge, offering wild game, fresh fish, and local organic produce, all with a contemporary Southwestern flare. Come early for breakfast with a view. Enjoy a gourmet continental breakfast featuring homemade pastries, fresh juices, shade grown coffee, and more. Relax atop the lodge in the La Mano Lounge and end your evening with a sunset, the moon, or under the stars. Open late-April to mid-October. (970) 529-4421.
Far View Terrace Restaurant: The Far View Terrace offers a casual dining atmosphere located just a quarter mile from Far View Lodge. There is something for everyone with a wide variety of choices from breakfast through dinner, including classic fare and local favorites such as the house favorite, a Navajo taco. An additional feature is the Java City Coffee Bar with lattes, cappuccinos, smoothies, ice cream, and our special house made Mesa Verde fudge! Open May to mid-October. (970) 529-4444.
FAR VIEW LODGE
From the park entrance, drive 15 miles (24km) to the Far View Terrace Restaurant parking lot. Meet and check in with the ranger at the south end of the parking lot. Drive time from the park entrance is 45 minutes. From there, the group will caravan to the parking area near the trailhead. Meet the ranger at the parking lot no later than 8:15 am.
Note: Some Tours may be available only from the Tour Park on a first-come-first-served basis. Arrival dates earlier than the online-reservation-window may also be available at the Tour Park.