On Thursday we camped at Mesa Verde. Our campsite felt like we were out in the middle of nowhere.
We even saw a few deer right behind our tent!
After we set up camp we hiked to Spruce Tree House, the most accessible cliff dwelling at Mesa Verde.
John waves from in front of a kiva, or ceremonial pit. He's become quite the camera hog on this trip. :)
Anna and I
We got to climb down into one of the kivas.
After Spruce Tree House we drove to the highest point in the park, over 8,000 feet above sea level.
I am almost getting used to beautiful views, but this was amazing. They say that you can see four states on clear days; as it was, we saw several different rain storms across the valley.
All our menfolks at Park Point
On Friday we toured the Cliff Palace, the largest cliff dwelling in North America. The hike involved lots of steps and several ladders, so the little boys loved it. :)
The view of Cliff Palace was definitely worth every step to get there! We really enjoyed our ranger-guided tour of the cliff dwellings. We had had concerns about safety--after all, it is a cliff dwelling--but it turned out to be very family friendly.
Our little cliff dweller, James
Mommy and Daddy...
...and the children
* * *After Mesa Verde we climbed back into our home away from home--a.k.a. the van--and drove on to southern Utah. We had reservations at a campground near Arches National Park and we looked forward to some hiking and picture-taking.
Check back for pictures of a really fun hike and a hot campground!