Into the Dinetah Labyrinth: Exploring Pueblo I and Navajo Archaeology

October 6, 2017 12:00 AM
October 8, 2017 12:00 AM
Archaeology, Friends of Archaeology

Most archaeological enthusiasts venture north along US 550 on their way to explore the Ancestral Pueblo world, and most turn to the west, conscious only of the Great Houses of Chaco Canyon, Salmon Ruins, and Aztec Ruins. Few travelers turn to the east and take the less traveled path into the Dinetah, known best as the traditional homeland of the Navajo. The labyrinth of canyons, mesas, and dirt roads characterizing this region can be intimidating, and this sentiment may have extended deep into the past. In addition to the better known Navajo presence, the region was the home to a strong early Puebloan population, but the Chaco people did not seem to venture much east of the Great North Road. Why?

The Dinetah extends from Aztec in the north to Dulce in the south and is sandwiched roughly between US 64 on the east and US 550 on the west. The majority of the region is administered by the Bureau of Land Management and the Dinetah may be the richest federal archaeological land holding in the United States, however, the archaeological sites are subtle, not developed for the visiting public, and effectively unknown to most of the world. Hiking is not strenuous but some rock climbing will be involved. High clearance vehicles are recommended; we will be carpooling to all of the sites.

Spaces are limited. To reserve your place for this event call (505) 982-7799, ext. 7 after 7am starting Tuesday, August 29. The cost of the trip is $255 for FOA members and $290 for non-FOA members.

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