• Long House in autumn

    Bandelier

    National Monument New Mexico

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  • Access by Shuttle Bus Only

    Through October 27, 2014 all access to the most visited part of the park, Frijoles Canyon, will be via a mandatory shuttle bus from the nearby community of White Rock from 9 AM - 3 PM daily. Private cars may drive in before 9 AM or after 3 PM. More »

Gifts of the Earth

For thousands of years, hunter-gatherers lived on the Pajarito Plateau, gaining knowledge of their environment. This understanding of the available resources, their location, use, and seasonality was, and continues to be, passed on from generation to generation.
 
sumac berries

The sumac bush had many uses. It’s bright-colored berries are rich in Vitamin C.

photo by sally king

The Land Provides All
There are hundreds of species of native plants and animals found in the wide range of habitats on the plateau. The people gathered piñon nuts, amaranth seeds, cactus fruits, grass seeds, seasonal berries, and a wide variety of leafy plants for food. They made tools from juniper, mountain mahogany, and other woody plants. Some plants were used for ceremonial purposes, dyes, or medicines.

Remaining In Sync
The ebb and flow of rainfall on this landscape created constant fluctuations in the growing seasons and availability of resources. Adapting to these conditions by gathering the foods that were available each year and by storing foods from previous years was critical to the survival of the Ancestral Pueblo people. Their diets changed seasonally and annually.

 
turkey
Domesticated turkeys provided important protein and soft feathers for warm turkey-feather blankets.
photo by Ernesto burciaga

Did You Know?

Valles Caldera

The Valles Caldera is the collapsed summit of the Jemez Volcano which erupted over 1 million years ago. Ash from this volcano formed the volcanic tuff from which the Ancestral Pueblo people built their homes.