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Cacti Bloom

Nature Hike

Walk through a nature preserve and learn about the people, plants and geology that make Cortez, Colorado unique!

What you'll do

Cortez, Colorado is located in one of the highest concentrations of archaeological ruins in the entire world! Learn about these ancient peoples & culture on our 2.5 mile walk in Hawkins Nature Preserve. (Dogs are welcome, please ask before you bring Fido, and bring a leash!)


Our walk follows the same route as the Mesa Verde Sunrise Tour, but you won't have to wake up at dawn! We start walking across an ancient seabed of slick-rock and into pinon-juniper woodlands. We will stop at the edge of a canyon to admire the surrounding mountain ranges & mesas before continuing our walk to a 1,000+ year-old Puebloan ruin. At the archeological site I like to surprise guests with a local treat and discuss the differences and similarities that our modern culture has to those of the Ancient Puebloans. After enjoying our treat we continue our loop back to the parking lot.


Along the walk we will stop occasionally to learn about the unique geology & ecology of southwest Colorado.Guests are encouraged to ask questions along the way. As a Cortez-local I know most of history/folklore of the area and am passionate about sharing this special place with others!This hike is enjoyable rain or shine!

About the Tour


This was a perfect hike with our 4.5 yr old twins! The view was great, and Helen knew lots of stories and facts about the area. The trails are a little muddy in places as it's March, so wear good shoes! Our kids thought it was fun to "mud-skate" :) would definitely recommend!

— Megan, March 2021

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