Square Tower House tours begin Thursday, June 1. All reservations are available 14 days in advance at 8:00 am MDT. For example, a reservation for a tour on October 1 will be available on September 17 starting at 8:00 am MDT.
Featuring the tallest standing structure in the park, an intact kiva roof, original plaster and paint, and plentiful rock art, Square Tower House is one of Mesa Verde's most impressive cliff dwellings. Visitors to the Mesa Top Loop can get a great view from the overlook, but intrepid hikers are treated to an adventurous and intimate look inside Square Tower House on this special ranger-led tour.
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This Ranger-Led strenuous 90-minute, 1-mile (2.6 km) round-trip hike is along an unpaved, uneven trail that descends 100 feet (30 m), and includes steep drop-offs, switchbacks, and two ladders (the longest is 20 feet [6.1 m]). Each hiker must be able to scramble over boulders and navigate steep gravel trails unassisted.
Wear sturdy hiking shoes or boots and bring a minimum of 1/2 gallon (2 liters) of water per person. Archeological sites are vulnerable to damage caused by rodents attracted to food crumbs. Food is not permitted within the site during your tour.
Consider your physical health before joining a hike. Hiking is not recommended for those with heart or respiratory problems, or other physical difficulties. Elevations range between 7,000 and 7,500 feet (2134 m and 2286 m) above sea level. Weather conditions are quite variable. It's possible to begin your hike in full sun and end with a thunderstorm. Plan for all weather conditions. Bring a minimum of 1/2 gallon (2 liters) of water per person.
This hike may not be appropriate for young children. Each hiker must be able to scramble over boulders and navigate steep gravel trails unassisted.
From the park entrance, drive 20 miles (32 km) to the all-way stop on Chapin Mesa. Turn left onto the Mesa Top Loop. Drive 1.9 (3 km) miles to Square Tower House Overlook. To make sure you arrive on time, allow at least 1 to 1-1/4 hour to drive to the Square Tower House Overlook from the park entrance. Meet the ranger at the Square Tower House Overlook at 8:15 am. Hikers depart for Square Tower House promptly at 8:30. You MUST arrive 15 minutes early for a safety and logistics briefing before your tour.
Parking may be limited. You may consider parking at the Navajo Canyon Overlook on the Mesa Top Loop, from which Square Tower House is a short walk.
June 1-October 21, 2023, 8:30am Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
October 22-Tours close for the 2023 season.
Tour is limited to 10 people.
Price: $25.00 per person, ages 3 and up. You MUST physically print your tour ticket at home or download it to your phone to show the ranger before joining the tour. You will NOT be able to join the tour without a valid tour ticket presented. Late arrivals may result in forfeiting your tour. No refunds for late arrivals.
Tours may get delayed or cancelled ONLY if there is lightning and it becomes a safety issue. Refunds will not be issued in inclement weather. All tours will be conducted as scheduled. All tickets are NON-TRANSFERABLE AND NON-REFUNDABLE unless the tour is cancelled by the National Park Service.