Hungo Pavi sits at the mouth of Mockingbird Canyon at Chaco Culture National Historical Park. It is an unexcavated Chacoan great house (monumental public building) containing over 150 rooms, a great kiva, and an enclosed plaza. It is a good example of what Chacoan sites look like without excavations — covered with a protective blanket of wind-blown sand and native vegetation. It is strategically located near natural drainages, and several seeps and springs. It was occupied from 1000 to the 1250s.
I take a short trail around the building and through the plaza, admiring the structure of the great house against the natural cliffs.
Most of the great houses at Chaco Canyon are oriented to solar, lunar and cardinal directions, and some great houses incorporated sophisticated astronomy markers.
People congregated at Chaco Canyon because it was a sacred place. It may have been considered a “center place” that bound people together through a shared vision. Or it may have been simply a trading center where turquoise was traded for macaws, copper bells, shells and other items from distant lands.
I pass an ancient stairway carved into the cliff.
Today, many of the Southwest’s tribes are Chaco descendents. These tribes see Chaco as an important step on their clans’ sacred migration paths, and a spiritual place to be honored and respected.
Two masonry styles are shown below.
On Sundays, I post about hikes or walks that I have taken in my travels; I may also post on other unrelated subjects. I will use these posts to participate in Jo’s Monday Walks or any other challenges that catch my fancy.
This post is in response to Jo’s Monday Walk: Blessing the Fishermen.
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