The Enigma of Chaco Canyon

Photo by: Bigstockphoto
Photo by: Bigstockphoto

Love traveling? Perhaps you’re looking for a new adventure to add on your list of places to go to? If you do then you might as well check out Chaco Canyon! This wonderful canyon is holds one of the mysteries of ancient civilizations that existed in our planet, the ancient Puebloans. So if you are interested, this article will help you with that!

Chaco Canyon

The beautiful Chaco Canyon is a shallow, ten-mile canyon that is settled in the northwest corner of New Mexico. It said that the canyon was carved from the ancient sea beds that were caused by centuries of erosions. This canyon stands at an elevation of 6,200 feet and is particularly very hot in the summer and very cold during winter. However despite these harsh climates, evidence of civilization can be found in these parts. It has been proven that human dwelling began there around 2900 B.C. up until 200 AD when the first farmers settled in that area. These farmers then built small pit and communities began to form. At around 850 AD the people began building and constructing massive stone buildings. The structures that they built stood about four or five stories high with a number of different rooms. Some even said that one building contained about seven hundred rooms and kivas. These buildings were also connected to each other by lines of sight so that communication was made easier. They also have water collection systems and elaborate road paths found in and out of the buildings.

The construction of buildings continued on for 300 years. In 1150 AD the area was abruptly abandoned. As to what the reason why, the story is still unclear, some experts say it’s due to the drought that happened but the real reason remains a mystery until today. It has also been thought that the Chacoans migrated to the Chuska Mountains or Mesa Verde where they thrived and grew in number. During the 1600s when the Spanish arrived in the Southwest, they christened the people living there as Pueblo which was named after the nineteen groups of people that spoke four languages. Today the people in Pueblo considered Chaco Canyon as a sacred place. After all, it was where their ancestors came from.

Going to Chaco Canyon

Going to the Chaco Canyon can be a challenging experience. With an elevation of 6,200 feet, the weather can be unpredictable. So in case you want to go there, best to bring your rain gear, hiking boots and everything else! The roads are not really suited for cars as the ground can shift from compact to loose. There are no satellites in there either so your smartphones, GPS systems and the likes may not work. Since it’s a remote area, most tourists camp at least one night before going up. You can set your camp at the Gallo Campground which is about a mile of the Visitor Center.

In case you are interested to see these ancient buildings in Chaco Canyon, make sure to book your trip as soon as possible. Don’t forget to enjoy and take lots of pictures while you’re there too! So good luck and enjoy your adventure!