Supporting A National Treasure: Spruce Tree House Alcove Arch Stabilization

by Anya Brose, Geotechnical engineer with ITASCA Consulting Group, Inc.,,
Allan Loy, Project manager with the National Park Service at Mesa Verde National Park, CO., al/an_/,
James A. Peterson, P.E., Ph.D., Principal engineer with ITASCA Consulting Group, Inc. in Minneapolis, MN,,
Lee Mason, P.E., Ph.D., (M.ASCE), Structural, geotechnical, and preservation engineer for the National Park Service's Vanishing Treasures program., at,
Ryan Peterson, P.E., Senior geotechnical engineer with ITASCA Consulting Group, Inc. in Minneapolis, MN.,,


Serial Information: Geo-Strata —Geo Institute of ASCE, 2018, Vol. 22, Issue 6, Pg. 34-40

Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: Mesa Verse National Park, located in southwestern Colorado, honors the cultural significance of the fantastic cliff dwellings of the Ancestral Pueblo people, who lived in the area from AD 600 to 1300. Originally these native peoples lived on top of the mesa, but began building structures into the cliffside in the first half of the 12th century. This ancient development area includes single-room structures all the way up to larger villages with more than 150 rooms. Spruce Tree House is the third-largest and best-preserved cliff dwelling in the Park. It was constructed about 800 years ago in a naturally formed alcove, cut into the Cliff House Sandstone formation. The Spruce Tree House alcove measures about 216 ft wide by 89 ft deep. The alcove is located across a deep, narrow canyon from the Park museum and is a very popular tourist destination.

Subject Headings: Cliffs | Trees | Residential buildings | Arches | Parks | Stadiums and sport facilities | Sandstone | Canyons | Colorado | United States


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