Tuzigoot National Monument Arizona - Camp Verde, Arizona - Indigenous Village Ruins & Extensive Artifacts on Display at Camp Verde Park
Tuzigoot National Monument Arizona is located off historic I-89A or Highway 206 in Camp Verde, Arizona. The park is 90 miles north of Phoenix and 52 miles south of Flagstaff. It is just below the central part of the state's Mogollon Rim. Although more than 800 acres were legislated to the park only 382 acres is currently possessed and preserved by the National Parks Service at this time.
In 2005 the 324 acre Tavasci Marsh and adjoining areas were acquired as part of a land exchange between the Phelps Dodge Corporation and the Bureau for Land Management of the federal government. Previously only 58 acres were under protection.
As there exists a diversity of landforms in the park and surrounding areas there is also a diversity of plant habitats and plants as well as a wide range of animal life. Numerous reptiles inhabit the park areas as well as some 50 mammals and scores of birds.
The main attraction to this site is the ruins of the Tuzigoot village that was a home to the Sinagua people. There are 110 rooms in the structure that include some 2 and even 3 story sections. The oldest sections date back to 1000 years A.D. This structure was inhabited until 1400. It is thought that as many as 250 people may have inhabited these rooms at one time.
The Visitor Center at the Tuzigoot National Monument Arizona museum has an extensive collection of archaeological pieces that were found here and at other nearby sites. The collection includes more than 26,000 artifacts displayed in order to tell the story of Sinagua culture.
The name Tuzigoot comes from the Apache language. The word means "crooked water'' in English, and refers to Peck's Lake just to the northwest of the area.
Tuzigoot National Monument Arizona is open from 8 AM to 5 PM from September through May and from 8 AM to 6 PM from June through August. It is closed only on Christmas Day.
There are two trails at the park that are both a quarter of a mile in length. The Tavasci March Overlook trail and the visitor center are accessible to wheelchairs however the Ruins trail is not. Neither should strollers be taken on the Ruins trail. Leashed pets are allowed on both trails.
The National Parks Service staff at the Monument, (together with the nearby Montezuma Castle National Parks Service staff), have developed an educational curriculum for use by educators in the schools. The curriculum is 182 pages long with 10 chapters dealing with cultural history and extensively looking at the natural history of the diverse habitats in the area. The park welcomes visiting field trips from nearby schools as well.
There is a fee for park entry for visitors that are 16 years of age and older. A discount admission is available that covers this park along with the nearby Montezuma Castle ruins for people visiting both sites in the same week.
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