Sunday, May 8, 2011

Hovenweep National Monument

Hovenweep National Monument was the last of our Southwestern Indian Ruins sites. Located in the extreme southeastern portion of Utah and spilling over into Colorado, Hovenweep is really not on your way to anywhere, so lots of people have never heard of it. In fact the name "Hovenweep" is a Paiute/Ute word meaning "Deserted Valley" and that is exactly what this is, a scrub desert.
Still on the edge of this canyon are the remains of some pretty big towers and dwellings over 900 years old. The fact that these ancient peoples were able to build these huge towers on the side of a canyon with no more than stone tools coupled with the fact that they eeked out a prosperous life in this desolate land is a testimony to the human spirit and ingenuity. Another great example of the stamp of God's image on humankind.

Many theories attempt to explain the use of the buildings at Hovenweep. The striking towers might have been celestial observatories, defensive structures, storage facilities, civil buildings, homes or any combination of the above. While archeologists have found that most towers were associated with kivas, their actual function remains a mystery.

These ruins are different than those we saw at Montezuma, Aztec and Mesa Verde, because there are huge towers and strongholds built here., almost medieval castle like in their look! We enjoyed our lonely stroll around the grounds of Hovenweep, but boy were we glad to drive back into what seemed like the lush and green state of Colorado!

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