Out in the middle of the South Western desert, hidden outside of the Navajo Nation, lies what was once the trading center of the Ancient Pueblo People. Consisting of multiple trails, ancient petroglyph sites, and some of the largest ruins from the years 900 – 1150, The Chaco Culture Historical Park holds wonder begging to de discovered and wilderness ready to explore.
When I say Chaco Culture is in the middle of nowhere, I’m not kidding. The park is located about 75 miles from the closest substantial town and over 120 from the closest city, but that makes the exploration even more worthwhile.
While a couple of the sites are accessible from the main road, the real gems come once you get into the back country. I warn you though, accessing the back trails is an experience in itself. The trail up to the top of the cliff is a steep, rocky, two foot wide crack in the middle of the rock. This is definitely not an easy climb but well worth it. Once you get to the top, the world opens up for you.
There are not really any trails. Rock cairns dot areas giving you a idea of where to head but signs are few and far between. I got lost multiple times trying to find my way to the Alto complex as well as getting back to the car. Don’t despair though. Just be prepared with plenty of water. After a couple of miles of wandering, you’ll come across Pueblo Alto, an 89 room big house begging to be explored.
Closest Supercharger Farmington NM 75 mi