• cavate with ladder

    Bandelier

    National Monument New Mexico

A Place of Diversity

upper falls in autumn

Frijoles Creek drops over two waterfalls on its way to the Rio Grande.

photo by sally king

Frijoles Creek begins on the snowy slopes of the 10,199-foot-high Cerro Grande Peak. Carving its way down through the Pajarito Plateau for over fourteen miles before entering the winding Rio Grande, Frijoles Creek drops about 4,000 feet. This dramatic change in elevation on the Pajarito Plateau creates climate differences that support a wide diversity of life. This diversity made the area livable for the Ancestral Pueblo people, providing them with food, medicine, clothing, and supplies.

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