Southwest American Indian Ruins
Picture Tour

Cliff Dwellings at Bandelier (page 4 of 4)

View looking back through a cave dwelling entrance. Photo by Howard J. Partridge.

View toward Tyuonyi Pueblo from a Cave Room
Bandelier National Monument, New Mexico

The Anasazi Indians enlarged and smoothed the surfaces of these caves with stone tools.  The soft rock made this possible, but it still would have been quite a job.  The interiors are generally quite dark, with only the door for light and soot blackened ceilings.  The Anasazi used the caves for living, storage, and ceremonial purposes.  Access to them would have been via wooden ladders and/or foot and handholds in the rocks.  Only a few of the caves are actually open to the public, like this one.  Photograph taken in 1991 by Howard J. Partridge.
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