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“Incredible experience, so glad we came.”

Ute Mountain Tribal Park
Ranked #1 of 2 things to do in Towaoc
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Attraction details
Owner description: The cliff dwellings at the Ute Mt. Tribal Park are a true find. See Ute wall paintings and petroglyphs as they were, and take your time: this secluded site gets far less visitors than Mesa Verde.
Tallahassee, Florida
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Incredible experience, so glad we came.”
Reviewed August 13, 2013

I have to admit this was my favorite part of our three week trip out west. Rick was our guide & he was amazing. We toured five cliff dwellings and got to look at several pictographs (including one with the creation story). It was fun hiking the trails to the cliff dwellings and we learned so much from Rick about the people who lived there. Because my kids are older (12 & 14) it's very hard to find activities that are exciting & challenging, yet safe enough for me to agree with. The best part, the kids were learning while having fun. This is a hands on activity with lots of opportunities to experience structures and artifacts from hundreds to a thousand years old. There are several wooden ladders to climb & can be a little frightening. The one to Eagles Nest was a little scary. It's an optional climb if you are afraid of heights. Because of the long drive to and from the canyon we chose to drive our own vehicle - that way the kids could keep themselves occupied. But, the drive is on a very rough road so keep that in mind if driving in a car.

Visited July 2013
5 Thank jackie g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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49 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
93 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“The highlight our our 2 week vacation!”
Reviewed July 9, 2013

After reading many reviews while planning our west vacation, we decided to book the Ute Mountain Tribal Park full day tour. It was the best decision ever! Our tour guide Rick Hays was amazing, kind, knowledgeable and inspiring. The first half of the day centered around pictographs with my wife, 9yr old, 17yr old, and two other visitors. The second half of the day was just the four of us and our guide Rick. We ate lunch on top of the mesa and then climbed down into Lion's Canyon to explore the dwellings! Rick was very patient with my 9 yr old, as he is a slow hiker. The sites were unforgettable and it was also a very spiritual outing! Even our two boys said it was the best tour in our vacation! Thank you Rick!

Visited June 2013
5 Thank Richard C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Carmichael, California
Level Contributor
55 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
“Fabulous day in canyons visiting ancient cliff dwellings”
Reviewed June 11, 2013

The full day trip exceeded expectations. Rick Hays was our guide and did an outstanding job. He is very knowledgeable and shared an incredible amount of information about the history, culture, and beliefs of the Utes, Ancient Puebloans, Hopis, and other tribes. It was a day rich in learning and discovery.

We saw a panel of petroglyphs which Rick interpreted. We climbed down into a series of abandoned cliff dwellings where there were still bits of pottery, tools, gnawed tiny corn cob husks, and even turkey bones. It felt as if the inhabitants had just left a few months ago!

The day was hot, so bring plenty of water and a sunhat in addition to your lunch. Be prepared to climb up and down several ladders, but all the ladders are sturdy, wide, and firmly fixed. We walked about 1.5 miles (not the 3 miles mentioned in the Lonely Planet guide.) The cliff dwellings are all in the same canyon and are connected to each other by a lateral trail created by the Indians. Hiking their trail was part of the adventure. Since the cliff dwellings are in shady alcoves, we weren't in the sun all the time.

Highly recommended!

Visited June 2013
6 Thank Kitty4805
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mississauga, Canada
Level Contributor
57 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
“What a special day being guided to cliff dwellings and hearing stories of another time by a Ute Native American Indian.”
Reviewed June 1, 2013 via mobile

Rick was our guide for the day.he drove a van full of people and we drove our vehicle- rough terrain but we wanted our own stuff so we could layer up and off and eat our lunch etc. we climbed down into several amazing cliff dwellings( eagles best) and had to climb several ladders up and down. Don't go if you are afraid of heights!! But what an amazing chance to walk amidst these ruins- actually inside them. Rick had so much Info to share- we learned a lot. He also took us to see pictographs and petroglyphs. The creation story was on some of the rocks. We saw tons of pottery shards!! Saw wild miles and many wild horses- beautiful! Though we had some drizzle and cool temps, it was a highlight for me. Rick was very spiritual.

Visited May 2013
3 Thank hikesedonachick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Prescott, Arizona
Level Contributor
119 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Better then Mesa verde”
Reviewed May 28, 2013

Spend a day with guide Rickie Hays in the park and you will not be disappointed. It's a full day for $48.00 per person plus if you ride in their van. I recommend you use their van, it's a total of about 80 miles on rough roads. More important you will be with Rickie. His stories and info are invaluable. Bring your own lunch and water. The trip starts in the canyon with rock art, minor ruin sites. You then go up to the ridge. From the ridge you climb down 5 ladders each from 6-12 feet to a trail midway on the canyon face. This trail is maybe half mile and takes you to four amazing cliff dwelling. To get to the last you climb up a 39 step ladder to a narrow ledge that leads to the ruin, Eagles Nest! You won't forget it. The ladder can be intimidating but worth it. Unlike the National Park sites you can go into these ruins, touch and feel...not to be missed if you are need Cortez, Colo.

Visited May 2013
4 Thank jmes h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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