To act or not to act.

In this episode, we explore the approach to preservation at two different sites: a park managed by the National Park Service, and an ancestral site managed by the people of Santa Clara Pueblo in New Mexico.

It has its own life. If it wants to live, it’ll continue to live. If it doesn’t, that’s when you see things break down.
— Alex Suazo
These places are tremendous educational resources. And for people in this country that don’t have that sort of interaction with different cultures, different perspectives on life, coming to Mesa Verde can be a very eye-opening experience.
— Tim Hovezak

Mesa Verde National Park and Puye Cliff Dwellings are two of the largest and oldest cliff dwellings in North America, and both face threats including erosion and frequent rock fall as geology continues to work in the desert Southwest.

We’ll hear from Tim Hovezak, Cultural Resources Program Manager at Mesa Verde National Park, and Alex Suazo, Operations Manager at Puye Cliff Dwellings, about the pros and cons of stabilizing archaeological sites.

Looking for more?

Well, you've come to the right place.


Spruce Tree House

Want to hear more about the history of the alcove and restoration at Spruce Tree House?

Check out this video by Mesa Verde National Park.

The Wetherills' "Discovery"

Follow Mesa Verde National Park on Facebook and Instagram to learn more about the Ancestral Pueblo people, the Wetherills and other early American explorers, and the National Park Service itself -- just like in this great post from Ranger Byron about Acowitz and that "discovery" story.

‘P-U- which is ‘poo’ in our language means ‘rabbit,’ and ‘Y-E,’ ‘ye’ means ‘gathering.’

So it means ‘Where the Rabbits Gather.’
— Alex Suazo

Where the Rabbits Gather

While Puye and Spruce Tree House are both considered cliff dwellings, they exist in much different geologic regions; Spruce Tree House was built in a sandstone alcove, while Puye was constructed natural caves formed in the "volcanic tuff" from the neighboring Valles Caldera.


Want to visit Puye Cliff Dwellings?

Check out their website to plan your visit: