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  Educational Opportunity

Crow Canyon Archaeological Center

A mother and daughter learn to start fire with a fire bow and spindle stick during Crow Canyon's Family Archaeology Week.
A Crow Canyon Archaeology Research Program participant excavates at a site near Crow Canyon.
An Archaeology Research Program participant screens for artifacts with a Crow Canyon archaeologist.
The Crow Canyon campus.
A student holds an artifact she discovered while excavating at a site near Crow Canyon.
Crow Canyon's Pueblo Learning Center, a replica of a Pueblo II–Pueblo III farmstead dating from about A.D. 1150 to 1200.
Crow Canyon's Pithouse Learning Center, a replica of a Basketmaker III ("Early Farmer") pithouse dating from about A.D. 650.
Adults participating in campus-based programs are housed in 10 rustic but comfortable cabins modeled after Navajo hogans.
Participants in Crow Canyon's Archaeology Lab Program examine some of the thousands of artifacts that come through the Center's lab every year.
A student in Crow Canyon's High School Archaeology Camp shares a discovery with one of the Center's archaeologists.
A view of the Crow Canyon campus with the Sleeping Ute Mountain in the background.
Crow Canyon Archaeology Research Program participants excavate at a site near Crow Canyon and contribute to our understanding of the ancestral Pueblo Indians.
The Crow Canyon lodge, which contains the dining hall, dormitory housing for students, and a small lounge.

Come to the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center and experience archaeology firsthand! The mission of the center is to advance knowledge of the human experience through archaeological research, education programs, and collaboration with American Indians. Since 1983, Crow Canyon has been reconstructing the centuries-long history of the Pueblo Indians in the American Southwest and capturing the imagination of adults, teens, and children from across the country through innovative experiential education programs. Crow Canyon’s long-term multidisciplinary research focuses primarily on the ancestral Pueblo (Anasazi) occupation of the Mesa Verde region in southwestern Colorado. Assisted by students and adults enrolled in its programs, the center has conducted excavations at more than 30 ancient sites in the southwest, making discoveries that have contributed to some of the most important new understandings in Southwestern archaeology in the last two decades. Crow Canyon values the knowledge and perspectives of indigenous peoples, and the center’s staff collaborates with American Indians on a wide variety of initiatives of mutual interest, including research projects, education curricula, and language- and cultural-preservation programs. American Indians' many contributions to Crow Canyon programs provide a rich, authentic experience for students and adults alike.

How to Participate

For travelers visiting the Four Corners region, Crow Canyon’s Archaeology Day Tour provides a hands-on overview of southwestern archaeology, including tours of the center’s current excavation site and laboratory. It is a perfect complement to explorations of nearby archaeological attractions. Crow Canyon’s excavation and lab programs offer adults and families the unparalleled opportunity to work side-by-side with professional archaeologists—excavating at the center’s current site and assisting in the artifact analyses that are vital to the understanding of ancient Pueblo Indian lifeways. Crow Canyon also offers archaeological and cultural tours throughout the American southwest and the world. With top scholars as trip leaders, privileged access to rarely visited places, and limited group sizes, Crow Canyon travel adventures deliver once-in-a-lifetime experiences. For children and teens, Crow Canyon offers field trips and overnight school group programs, a High School Field School, and middle and high school summer camps. Crow Canyon is located just outside Cortez, Colorado. Contact the Crow Canyon Registrar at 1-800-422-8975, ext. 146, for additional information.

Dates and Times

Crow Canyon Archaeological Center's program season runs from March through October. The center is open Monday through Friday each week. Call for dates for individual programs. Some international travel programs may be scheduled outside of this window.

Appropriate Ages: Certain programs are appropriate for students as young as ten. There are no upper age limits as long as you are physically able to participate.

 ADA Accessibility Notes
All campus facilities are ADA accessible. Access to archaeological sites requires hiking over well-trod, but uneven, dirt paths.

For More Information, Contact:

Joyce Alexander
Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, 23390 Road K, Cortez, CO 81321
970-564-4362 · toll-free 800-422-8975, ext. 162 · fax 970-565-4859

Debra Miller
Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, 23390 Road K, Cortez, CO 81321
970-564-4346 · toll-free 800-422-8975 ext 146 · fax 970-565-4859

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Boundaries and names shown do not necessarily reflect the map policy of National Geographic.

Latitude: 37.355830000
Longitude: -108.621030000
Elevation: 6142 FT (1872 M)
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