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Monday, April 16, 2018

Hovenweep National Monument

There are 5 National Parks in southern Utah and they are all great.  I classify them as must see places in the Great Southwest.  After you visit the National Parks search out National Monuments.  They can be as awe inspiring as National Parks.  Remember my visit to Natural Bridges National Monument.

I saw Hovenweep National Monument on a road sign on US191 between Bluff, UT and Blanding, UT.  I also saw information in the Blanding Visitors Center.

After I went visited Hovenweep, I thought it was much better than I thought it would be.  Miles east of US191 on secondary roads, and sitting in the Colorado State Line you come to Hovenweep.

Along with other ancient Native American establishments we know little of their demise.  Hovenweep is no different, although they built their structures on the rim and canyon floor.

This canyon does not appear to have alcoves in the canyon faces to build into, except for one formation you will see below.

At Hovenweep they were architechts choosing many designs for their dwellings.

In another post I mentioned I was captivated by the ruins this year, having spent time looking at the publicly advertised locations and searching out the places that were more obscured.

Hovenweep is not a get out of your car, walk to the ruin, look at it from a distance,  say that was nice and walk back to your car.

At Hovenweep you go in more of a journey into the canyon and walking the rim to see the many structures up close.

What amazed me was the fact they built many of their structures directly on the canyon rim.

They also built high multilevel structures with engineering not found at cliff dwelling locations.

Above is my favorate dwelling at Hovenweep on the canyon floor.  This individual rock with a large overhang was a natural shelter that was closedvin with rock.  It would have been fun to be slowed to tour this site.

As shown above you can see some of the buildings sitting above the edge of the canyon rim, across from each other.

From the canyon floor you can get the perspective of the canyon not being that deep and lacking the washed out places that cliff dwellers could have lived.

This was my second visit to Hovenweep this year.  The first trip Joanne and I came over on a cold snowy day and we passed on the hike.  Today Joanne, Susan and I visited and it was cool, but with blue skies to make the day much more pleasant.

The craft of building these structures involved square and round buildings.

Above in the center on the canyon floor was a square tower that we wondered it’s purpose.

The large building on the left has a door on the cliff edge.  Was it for escaping?  Not the door I would wish to use.

This round building being guarded by the raven on top had annodd entrance and it appears it may have had many levels at one time.

Here is a better closeup of the tower on the canyon floor.  It’s at the end of the canyon and based on its current size it must have been very tall.

The builders built with two finished courses, one on inside and one on outside and filled the center making the walls thick and able to gain height from strength from design.

They also added on to the sides of some buildings making more room as they needed it.

Come to Hovenweep to experience a wonderful collection of Ancient Native American architecture.

You will not be disappointed.

Back to the first picture.  Notice the green pin drops I added on Google Maps.  These are entrances off the road past Hovenweep were you can drive in a bit and further with high clearance vehicles, to reach places that you can hike into the canyon rim in other places to see other structures.  Including these side trips will make your visit the better part of the day, especially if you drive over.


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