key hole ruinThe Key Hole Ruin is a small Anasazi cliff dwelling in an alcove on a mesa overlooking Monument Valley.

The Key Hole Ruin is almost completely intact, well preserved, because of its sheltered location. To reach it you follow a narrow trail along the edge of the butte under the ruin and then get down on your stomach and wiggle through two natural "key hole" openings in the cliff.

Why did the ancient native people choose to build and live on the edge of sheer cliffs in this harsh environment? The Key Hole Ruin's location suggests it was chosen because it could be easily defended - it would be all but impossible for an enemy to penetrate the structure.

This is an extremely fun hike suitable for kids. Inquire at Gouldings Trading Post in Monument Valley to find a guide to lead you to the Key Hole and other sites in this area.

See our video showing this hike.