Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Wupatki National Monument

Heading north from Sunset Crater, we visited Wupatki National Monument, home to several pueblos.

The first area we visited is known as Wukoki. For some reason this house captured my imagination, and I've had trouble editing down the photos. I love them all.

Wukoki was occupied from approximately 1120 through 1210. Artifacts found here include pottery, a shell bracelet and stone ear pendants with turquoise mosaic inlay.

Our second stop in the park, the Wupatki pueblo was once the largest building in this area. With 100 rooms, and 1000 people within a days walk, it was an important trade and ceremonial center. Wupatki is situated in a frontier area between different groups of people.

The circular gathering place probably served as a meeting place and ceremonial center. There is also a ball court and a blowhole located nearby. The blowhole is a hole in the earth where air flows in and out from interconnected underground cavities.

From Wupatki, you can see black cinders on the ground and the cone of a volcano not too far away - evidence of the eruption at Sunset Crater.

The park map indicates that other pueblos and trails are part of this park. However, after visiting these two areas of the park, I was eager to head north to get our first glimpse on this trip of the Grand Canyon.

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