It was a 270 mile journey from Santa Fe to Trail Canyon Ranch. This was in the Four Corners Area – where Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah meet – and we had found it, once more, on VRBO.
The journey was through the wide open spaces of New Mexico and Colorado and the scenery, if not spectacular, was well worth looking at.
The ranch is owned by a delightful couple who are running it virtually as a nature reserve.
The business part of the ranch is a tree nursery – if you want a tree in the Four Corners, David is your man! There is a lot more to the ranch, however. There is a waterfall
and various archaeological sites.
The site where we photographed the picture above, has never been investigated and as you walk over the ground you find yourself stepping on 500 year old pottery. Trail Canyon is a wonderful spot!
Nearby are several sites associated with the Anasazi, whom we met in a previous post. My next post will be about Mesa Verde, which is the most spectacular, but in this one I will show what we found in Hovenweep National Monument and in the Canyons of the Ancients – fascinating sites which scarcely anyone has heard of.
Hovenweep is actually in Utah but it is very close to the Colorado border. It is a shallow canyon with an astounding array of ancient buildings.
It is said to have the most sophisticated masonry of any of the Anasazi settlements.
Like all the other settlements it was abandoned about 1550.
The people lived in or near the canyon but their “fields” were on the flat land of the mesas.
To build their dwellings they often took advantage of the natural shapes in their surroundings.
It is difficult to imagine living in such desert conditions; it must have been a tough life. Eventually they gave up and moved to the valleys of the Rio Grande and the Little Colorado River. This was about 1300AD.
A similar story can be told in “The Canyons of the Ancients” which is quite close to Trail Canyon. We had a walk through the area, keeping a wary eye out for the mountain bikers who love the area.
Here there are no spectacular sites; but all around there is evidence that people lived here and left their mark.
However not everything is bleak. There is beauty to be found, if you look carefully.
But the main attraction in the area is Mesa Verde which will be the subject of the next post.