• View of Square Tower House, seen along the Mesa Top Loop

    Mesa Verde

    National Park Colorado

Enrichment Package: Activity 2 -- Getting To Know The Park

This activity is an exercise designed to familiarize students with the park through hands on use of the Mesa Verde maps. This activity encourages use of map reading skills, as well as investigative skills. Explore the Mesa Verde web site to answer the following questions.

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Maps

There are a number of different maps available on the Maps web page. For this activity, you will be using either the Park map (pdf, 1 mb), Chapin Mesa map (pdf, 222 kb), or the Headquarters and Chapin Museum area map (pdf, 99 kb). To help you, each question is coded with the map(s) to use to find the answer. The map codes are:

P = Park
CM = Chapin Mesa
HQ = Headquarters and Chapin Museum Area

1. What is the number of the highway that passes the park entrance? (P)

2. How many miles is it from the entrance of Mesa Verde to Cortez? (P)

3. How many miles is it from the entrance of Mesa Verde to Mancos? (P)

4. How far is Morefield Village and Campground from the park entrance? (P)

5. Where can you find an amphitheater in the park? (P)

6. How high is the Park Point Overlook? (P)

7. What is the size limit (weight or length) for vehicles on the Wetherill Mesa Road? (P)

8. In what part of the park could you ride a tram? (P)

9. What is the name of the Indian Reservation south of the park? (P)

10. What cliff dwelling has a geometric shape in its name? (P or CM)

11. What is the name of the trail near Balcony House? (P or CM)

12. What are the names of the two trails in the museum area? (P or CM or HQ)

13. What cliff dwelling is located closest to the museum? (P or HQ)

14. Where can you find the Chief Ranger’s Office in the park? (HQ)

Web Page Investigation

The following questions can be found throughout the Mesa Verde website. If you are successful in finding the answers to all eight questions, consider yourself an expert investigator!

1. What does “Mesa Verde” mean?

2. If you want to visit Cliff Palace, what do you need to do first?

3. What is today's weather for Mesa Verde?

4. How much does it cost to get into the park in July?

5. Name two common birds you might see if you visited Mesa Verde?

6. How many people visited the park in 1906? In 1999?

7. How any miles is it from Mesa Verde to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon?

8. What is a WebRanger? (Hint: It’s For Kids)


«Answers to Activity 2: Getting To Know The Park»

Did You Know?

Photograph of Cliff Palace, 1895 - 1900 by WH Jackson

On a snowy December day in 1888, while ranchers Richard Wetherill and Charlie Mason searched Mesa Verde’s canyons for stray cattle, they unexpectedly came upon Cliff Palace for the first time. The following year, the Wetherill brothers and Mason explored an additional 182 cliff dwellings.