Itís back to Mesa Verde today to tour the Chapin Mesa. We start the day with a tour of Balcony House. Ed really wanted to do this tour and I agreed even though it meant I would have to climb a 32 foot ladder, crawl through an 18-inch wide by 12 foot long tunnel and climb up a 60-foot open cliff face with stone steps and two 10-foot ladders to exit. Iím not great at heights or tight spaces but the tour made it worth while.

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One of the shorter ladders and the tunnel. The tunnel wasn't too bad as you could see the other end.

A few photos of Balcony House, which is a "medium sized" cliff dwelling with 40 rooms. Cliff dwellings are crafted of sandstone, wooden beams and mortar. Much of the remains are original but over the past hundred years rubble has been removed and some restoration and stabilization done.

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We also decided to tour Mesa Verdeís largest cliff dwelling Cliff Palace which has over 150 individual rooms and more than 20 kivas (rooms for religious rituals). This tour involved descending uneven stone steps and climbing four ten foot ladders. I couldnít make any complaints about this as a little girl that I guess was three years old did it without any help.

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Just down the road from Balcony House is an area where Native Americans have set up a market of sorts. We stopped and were happy to see that fry bread was being sold.

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This couple sold us the delicious fry bread.

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One of the many wonderful views we saw today as we drove through Chapin Mesa. From a distance saw at least a dozen cliff dwellings including the famous Spruce House. We also saw the remains of a number of pit houses and visited the informative museum.