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‘What’s for Dinner at Chimney Rock?’

By Nadia Werby
Special to The SUN

Chimney Rock Interpretive Association invites you to a free, family-friendly Vision of Chimney Rock program on Sunday, Aug. 18,at Chimney Rock National Monument.

This month’s topic will be “What’s For Dinner at Chimney Rock.”

Dottie George, a CRIA volunteer, will discuss what the Ancient Puebloans ate for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and how they prepared their food.  Guests will be invited to participate and there will be nuts and napolitos for tasting.

This hands-on program is limited to a small group, so reservations are required. The program is suitable for those with limited time and people who cannot do the walking tour, especially older adults and young children, those with physical limitations and those who work during the week.

Guests for this event will need to arrive by 4:30 p.m. and drive to the upper parking area, which is paved and has restrooms. There is some seating available, but guests will also be able to bring chairs. The program will end by 6:30 p.m. Please reserve your spot by going to www.chimneyrockco.org or call (877) 444-6777. Reservations can be made online up until two hours before the event. Walk-ins will be accommodated when space is available.

On Tuesday, Aug. 20, watch the full moon rise over the mountain peaks as you listen to the music of a Native American flute at the top of Chimney Rock Mesa. The nearly 360-degree view of the mountain-studded horizon provides the dramatic celestial observatory valued so highly by the Ancient Puebloans. A speaker will tell the story of the people and their likely relationship with the moon, sun, and stars. You’ll be torn between looking west to see the spectacular sunset and focusing on the eastern mountain range to see the first sliver of moon. Volunteers light the trail down from the mesa top after the program.

The program lasts approximately four hours including check-in, driving to the mesa top, and walking to the site. The hike to the Great House Pueblo is short but moderately strenuous and not appropriate for those with mobility impairment or children under 12 years old.

Reservations are required. Tickets are $15 for this program, designed for folks 12 years and older. Add $5 for an early tour of the lower area (Great Kiva Trail Loop), which starts at 4:30 p.m. All participants must be through the Colo. 151 gate by 5:45 and the program begins at 6:30. Bring flashlights, water (also for sale at the cabin), cushions, and blankets or coats. After the Full Moon Program, guests will be given the opportunity to view the surface of the moon with telescopes for an additional $5. For reservations, visit www.chimneyrockco.org or call (877) 444-6777. Reservations can be made online up until two hours before the event. Walk-ins will be accommodated when space is available.

Chimney Rock National Monument is located 17 miles west of Pagosa Springs on Highway 160 and three miles south on Highway 151. Turn right at the gate and follow the road one half mile to the cabin registration area where the tours begin. All programs are sponsored by Chimney Rock Interpretive Assn., Inc., in partnership with the USDA Forest Service and the San Juan National Forest. Visit our website at www.chimneyrockco.org.

This story was posted on August 15, 2013.

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