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Ouray to Mesa Verde and tickets for tours

Concord, CA
Level Contributor
79 posts
24 reviews
Ouray to Mesa Verde and tickets for tours

My itinerary at this point has me traveling from Ouray to Mesa Verde on Sun, Jun 26th. I figure that we will leave Ouray around 8:30 am. Google Maps puts the travel time at around 3 hours. I figure I should add an extra hour of travel for photo stops, plus an hour stop in Silverton to look around, and an hour in Durango (maybe a little more) for a quick walk around and for lunch. This would put me in Mesa Verde around 2:30 or 3:00 pm. Does this sound about right?

I was hoping to see Cliff Palace on the last regular tour on that day (Sun, June 26th). What are the chances of getting a ticket with an arrival that late? Another option would be the Twilight Tour, which I really don't want, but would take if there isn't any other choice.

I plan to stay at Far View Lodge and then visit Balcony House the following morning (because my wife probably won't want to do it so she can sleep in) and Long View House in the afternoon before leaving for the Four Corners and Mexican Hat on Monday, June 27th. Does this make sense? If there are no more Cliff House tours available on June 26th, maybe I could do Long House on that day and both Balcony House and Cliff Palace on the following day. However, I read that in peak periods they might restrict you to only one of these two tours per day. How likely is that and how strictly is that enforced?

Any help would be appreciated.

Park City, Utah
Destination Expert
for Utah, Winter Sports
Level Contributor
20,724 posts
449 reviews
1. Re: Ouray to Mesa Verde and tickets for tours

No way to really know but from the sounds of your plan that day, you're arriving pretty late and I think you need to be prepared to be flexible. Keep in mind that it's also nearly an hour's drive from the visitor's center back to the ruins. Staying at Far View does give you greater flexibility. But if you really wish to see that much in that amount of time and still leave the next day, I would not take too long getting there. Maybe leave Ouray at 7:30 a.m. to buy yourself another hour.

Have fun.

Concord, CA
Level Contributor
79 posts
24 reviews
2. Re: Ouray to Mesa Verde and tickets for tours

Are tour tickets transferable? Is there a name on them?

Columbia, Maryland
Level Contributor
2,048 posts
18 reviews
3. Re: Ouray to Mesa Verde and tickets for tours

You're missing out on a lot of what Mesa Verde has to offer if you are just going to do the 3 ranger tours. Self touring and driving the loops and stopping at the numerous sites to read about and see how the area was inhabited over the several hundred years and the varied type housing that started with pit houses and eventually to the cliff dwellings. It takes about a day to do each mesa that way.

4. Re: Ouray to Mesa Verde and tickets for tours

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