Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Hovenweep National Monument

Hovenweep House & Hovenweep Castle in Hovenweep National Monument.
Santa Clara, CA - Another short post from our 2011 Fall Road Trip.  For this set we visit Hovenweep National Monument located right on the Utah-Colorado Boarder (of the six groups of ruins, two are in Utah and four are in Colorado).  Suwei and I had good intentions of visiting all of the groups, but if traveling with a baby has taught us anything, it's best not to get your hopes too high.  As usual we were moving slower than expected and only had time to visit one group.

Hovenweep Castle
We picked to visit the Square Tower Group in Little Ruin Canyon. First off, it's right next to the visitor's center and easy to get to (not really a bonus, but when you're pressed for time...)  Secondly, it's the park's main attraction and has the highest concentration of ruins.  And thirdly, there is a short two mile hike that follows the rim of the canyon.  Which is always nice when you're spending so much time in the car.

The name Hovenweep comes from the Ute word for, "deserted valley".  It was found in 1854 by Mormon missionaries, became a National Monument in 1923 and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1966.  Most of the structures still standing here were built between 1230 and 1275 AD by the Ancient Pueblo People (Did I mention how much Suwei and I love saying "Pueblo People?")  By 1350 AD, however, the valley was pretty much deserted.  It seems the lack of water forced folks to move to greener pastures further south. Unfortunately it was the lack of time and the desire to get a bit further west that day that forced us to desert the park.

Anyway, the two mile Little Ruin Canyon trail is well worth the wander.  Don't forget to take the side trail out to Tower Point and Hovenweep Castle!  I can't vouch for the rest of the park, but I'll go back to check it out when I get a chance.

Here is a link to the Little Ruin Canyon Trail Guide:  http://www.nps.gov/hove/planyourvisit/upload/LittleRuinCanyonTrailGuide.pdf

Unit Type House & Tower Point
Tower Point
Hovenweep Castle
Hovenweep Castle
Tower Point From Rim Rock House
The Twin Towers

Check out the earlier posts from this trip:

Fall Road Trip 2011 - California to Colorado
Fall Road Trip 2011 - Part II - Misc. Colorado Including Grand Mesa
Fall Road Trip 2011 - Part III - Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park
Telluride & The Canyons of the Ancients National Monument

And here is the link to our slideshow.  There are 12 photos in this one:

Fall Road Trip 2011 - Hovenweep National Monument

No comments: