DAY 12 PLAN: Gallup (option 1)



DRIVE: Chaco Culture National Park, NM to Gallup, NM

  • break camp
  • HIKE/VISIT: Chaco Culture National Historical Park sites/trails
  • 2pm DEP Chaco at the latest, or earlier if stopping at Sky City
    (**NOTE** – drive from Chaco to Sky City is about 3.5 hours and takes us BACK east)
  • DRIVE Chaco / Gallup
    (approx. 100 miles / 3 hours or, if going from Chaco to Sky City to Gallup approx 250 miles / 5.5 hours)
  • optional VISIT Acoma Sky City Pueblo Tour
    (**NOTE** – drive from Sky City back to Gallup is about 2 hours)
  • ARR Red Rock State Park
  • Set up camp
  • ARR Gallup
  • 7pm –Indian Dance performance
  • RETURN to Red Rock State Park for the night

NITE: State Park Developed Campsite / Red Rock State Park, NM


24 DEP: 1400 – Chaco Culture National Historical Park NM
(DRIVE: 103 miles / 3.0 hours = 3.5 hours estimated segment time)

ARR: 1730 – Gallup NM
(103 miles / 3.0 hours drive / 3.5 hours estimated travel)


24 DEP: 1000 – Chaco Culture National Historical Park NM
(DRIVE: 103 miles / 3.0 hours = 3.5 hours estimated segment time)

ARR: 1330 – Acoma Sky City
DEP: 1530 – Acoma Sky City
(DRIVE: 2.0 hours = 2.5 hours estimated segment time)

ARR: 1800 – Gallup NM
(103 miles / 3.0 hours drive / 3.5 hours estimated travel)




ACTIVITIES EN ROUTE from Chaco to Gallup:

Chaco Culture National Historic Park Sites – From the visitor center, a 9-mile paved loop road accesses five major Chacoan sites, including Pueblo Bonito. Self-guiding trails are available at each site. Each site usually takes 45 minutes to one hour to complete. (Visitor Center: (505) 786-7014 / website)

  • From the visitor center, a 9-mile paved loop road accesses five major Chacoan sites, including Pueblo Bonito. Self-guiding trails are available at each site (Each site usually takes 45 minutes to one hour to complete.)
  • Guided tours of Pueblo Bonito are offered daily at 10AM and 2PM

Acoma Sky City Pueblo Tour
The Pueblo of Acoma “Sky City” is located approximately one hour west of Albuquerque and one hour east of Gallup, New Mexico.
Address: PO Box 310, Pueblo of Acoma, NM 87034
(see website)
Toll Free: 1-800-747-0181

  • Our guided tours begin with a short ride to the top of the 367-foot-high sandstone mesa to the historic pueblo village of Sky City and home of the San Esteban del Rey Mission. Tribal Members lead the walking tours sharing Acoma’s unique Native American history and culture in the type of oral presentation that our people have been passing down for centuries. Considered one of the best cultural tours in New Mexico, Acoma Sky City ranks in the “top 10 great places to honor American Indian Life” –USA Today.
    The tour is one hour and twenty minutes long and covers approximately three-quarters of a mile (note: there are areas of uneven/rough terrain). Local artisans sell their crafts during the tour. Most do not accept credit cards or checks, but we have an ATM machine onsite for your convenience.
  • Discover the centuries-old history of New Mexico’s southwest Indians. Acoma Pueblo offers a window in time where Native people carry on the customary traditions of their ancestors through Native American pottery making and tribal celebrations. Educational tours and cultural exhibits are designed to generate a broader and deeper understanding of the Acoma People.
  • Acoma Pueblo is built atop a sheer-walled, 367-foot sandstone bluff in a valley studded with sacred, towering monoliths. Since 1150 A.D., Acoma Pueblo has earned the reputation as the oldest continuously inhabited community in North America. The mesa-top settlement is known worldwide for its unique art and rich culture.
  • A federally recognized Indian Tribe, Acoma Pueblo has a land base covering 431,664 acres and is home to 4,800 tribal members with more than 250 dwellings, none of which have electricity, sewer, or water. In 1629, construction began on the massive San Esteban del Rey Mission, a Catholic mission. Both the Mission and the Pueblo are Registered National Historical Landmarks. Acoma Pueblo was named the 28th National Trust for Historic Preservation (NTHP) site in 2007 and is the only Native American site in the nation.
  • First tour as early as 9:00 am with tours departing every 45 minutes to 1 hour. Last tour of the day departs at 5:00 pm.
  • FEE: $20/adult, $10/student

Gallup Nightly Indian dances
Courthouse Square Downtown Gallup
(see website)
Phone (505) 722-2228

  • Memorial Day through Labor Day (every night), 7:00 p.m.
  • Free

LODGING: Red Rock State Park
near Gallup NM
P.O. Box 10 Churchrock, NM 87311
(see park website)
(505) 722-3839 / Camping Reservations: (505) 722-3839 / Fax Number: (505) 726-1277

Red Rock Park, situated in Indian Country, is the gateway to Zuni, one of the Seven Cites of Cibola sought by Coronado and the Conquistadors; Acoma, the sky city, one of the oldest inhabited cities in the United States; Old Laguna Pueblo and its Spanish church; the Hopi Reservation; and the Navajo and El Morro are among the National monuments within a two hour drive from Red Rock Park. Petrified Forest National Park, the Ice Caves beneath Lava Badlands with temperatures of 31 degrees year round, the incomparable views of the badland formations known as the Painted Desert are all natural wonders that shouldn’t be missed when exploring the Gallup area.

  • Red Rock Park, with elevation from 6600 to 7000 feet and encompassing 640 acres, has large campground equipped with electrical and water hookups, picnic areas, restrooms and showers.
  • Directions: Heading west on I-40 take exit 33, go 4.5 miles west on frontage road, and follow signs to Red Rock State Park. /
    Heading east ib I-40 take exit 26, continue 2 miles east on frontage road and follow signs to Red Rock State Park


17 JAN 2010: Trying to find out when and where there are the Native American dance performances. The town of Gallup is supposed to have a nightly performance at the Cultural Center, but I cannot find it listed anywhere online.


  • New Mexico state official tourism site (about the state, plus things to do, etc.)
  • Native American New Mexico info about native american tribal events and activities open to the public.
  • Chaco Culture National Historical ParkThis Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, hosting the densest and most exceptional concentration of pueblos in the American Southwest. It is located in a relatively inaccessible canyon cut by the Chaco Wash, and contains the most sweeping collection of ancient ruins north of Mexico. There is a primitive campground inside the park. Tucked amongst the fallen boulders and cliffs of Gallo Wash, the campground offers camping in a rugged environment, surrounded by petroglyphs, a cliff dwelling, inscriptions, and a high desert landscape. There is no shade. The campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Indian Pueblo Cultural Center – in Albuquerque, has a schedule of dance performances as well as other native american cultural programming
  • Manzano state park – a state park near to Albuquerque that has camping
  • something native american? – here is a calendar of new mexico native american events and dances. and this is the site of the taos pueblo, where they sometimes have a very beautiful relgious dance called matachines. and another calendar of dances and events (with notices about photography policy)
  • Acoma Sky City Pueblo tour… on the Acoma reservation that is between Albuquerque and Gallup. It has the oldest continally inhabited pueblo, and there are tours given by tribal members for tourist (seems like it is very well developed tourism, but has gotten high ratings)