This approximate 200 mile road trip will take you through some high desert landscape and provide the opportunity to experience some cultural diversity from ancestral Puebloan to modern Navajo traditions. In addition, witness some geology which took millions of years to form.


Salmon Ruins is an 11th century pueblo ruin related to the Chaco Culture group, which originated in Chaco Canyon. Covering an area of over two acres, the pueblo had two distinct cultural occupations: the first from the Chaco Culture group, the second called the San Juan Occupation.

In addition to the puebloan ruins is Salmon Ruins Museum, Heritage Park, and Pioneer Homestead. The Salmon Ruins Museum offers a variety of exhibits featuring the best of artifacts from our excavation collections. Historic materials on display range from unique cultural textile samples to rock art, mining, and more. The Heritage Park offers architectural replicas of Tipis and Hogans, a Wikiup and Pithouse, and a Trading Post and Sweatlodge for your enjoyment. The Pioneer Homestead was built by George Salmon in the early 1890s.

Travel tip: Ask about the special "pueblito" tours to Largo Canyon.
Salmon Ruins
Photo by EMKotyk

U.S. 550

This 10,000-acre landscape is celebrated for its rugged and scenic wonders, including 7,000-foot Angel Peak. Managed by the New Mexico Bureau of Land Management, there are overnight camping and picnic areas available. Camp sites consist of parking space with picnic table and metal BBQ pit and pavilions are covered picnic tables with metal BBQ pits.
Angel Peak
Photo by EMKotyk

Chaco Canyon

Formerly a major ceremonial and trade center, this UNESCO World Heritage site was active from 850-1250 A.D. Regarded as central to the ancestral Puebloan culture, it is located in a canyon that contains the largest excavated ruins in the Southwest. The area features hundreds of small sites and 13 major ruins, most of which are accessible by car or on foot. The Park preserves the monumental architecture and complex community life of a major center of ancestral Puebloan culture that took root and flourished for a thousand years.
Pueblo Bonito
Photo by EMKotyk

NM Hwy 371

Famous for its area weaver auctions of Navajo rugs, auctions are usually held the second Friday of each month. Artisans also sell jewelry and pottery.
Crownpoint Navajo Rug Auction
PO Box 454
Crownpoint, NM 87313
(505) 786-2130/2131

A federal wilderness area, the Bisti De-Na-Zin Wilderness is a desolate area of eroded badlands that offer some of the most unusual scenery in the Four Corners region. Time and nature have etched a world of fantastic rock formations that have become a favored wilderness experience. The Bisti is world renowned for the discovery of the "Bisti Beast" a Tyrannosaurs Bistahieversor sealeyi discovered in 1998 and now on exhibit at the New Mexico Natural History Museum. In addition, the remains of an adolescent Pentaceratops was recovered in 2015 and is now the New Mexico Natural History Museum.
Bisti Arch (aka Dragon's Head Arch)
Photo by EMKotyk

Farmington, NM

Farmington is surrounded by world-class cultural treasures, magnificent landscapes, and thrilling river sports. Local museums highlight everything from fish and game to developments in electrical history to children's activities. Farmington Museum and Visitors' Center at Gateway Park exhibits the city's history, oil and gas industry, a trading post reproduction and rotating exhibitions.
Farmington Convention & Visitors Bureau
3041 E. Main St.
Farmington, NM 87402
(505) 326-7602