On The Edge

In spite of what a life-long obsession with flying might seem to indicate, I am actually scared of heights! For some reason the man-made wonders of hot air balloons, airplanes, and the mere presence of a steel barrier embolden me, and give me the freedom to enjoy amazing perspectives of the planet, looking out from above.

However, the likes of cliff edges, tiny mountain trails and winding roads with sheer drop-offs, turn my legs to jelly and induce a yucky, nausea in me. It’s something I hate, but which pushes me more to literally go out on the a ledge sometimes… well, if it’s worth it! And the Mesa Verde cliff dwellings were definitely one of those places.

Mesa Verde 1
Spruce Tree House

Some time around the 10th century the natives began moving down from living on the top of the plateau and began the precarious life on the edge. They scuttled up and down ladders, from ridge top field to the next and routinely wandered around next to a huge drop off!

Mesa Verde 2
We had been warned that the entry way to Balcony House was not for the weak-hearted
Mesa Verde 3
Up We Go! (there was the real drop off just below down into the depths of the canyon)
Mesa Verde 4
Self-Named Crazy Ranger Dave
Mesa Verde 5
For Tadd this was a doddle… no mind on the the potential plummet backwards
Mesa Verde 6
Location, location, location… was true even back then
Mesa Verde 7
Little Cliff-top Home
Mesa Verde 8
All kinds of building materials were used… this was pine fronds between stone and wood and morter
Mesa verde 9
The natural color of the rocks is amazing
Mesa Verde 10
The Front Door! (these people were tiny)
Mesa Verde 11
Mesa verde 12
Grinding Tools
Mesa verde 13
Looks like good security
Mesa Verde 14
Luckily I’m not claustrophobic too!
Mesa Verde 15
Their communities were dotted all across the cliff tops for miles and miles
Mesa Verde 16
We had hoped to hike down to Square Tower House, but alas no… or thank goodness I didn’t have to scramble over rocks etc
Mesa Verde 17
Amazing they could build this complex a house on the side of a cliff