Explore Historical Sites with Houseboat Rentals in AZ | Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Take out a houseboat rental in AZ and explore some exciting historical sites like the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. Incredibly, archaeologists have discovered evidence of people living in the Glen Canyon area as early as 50 A.D. Historical sites within the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area are preserved for the enjoyment and education and the public.

Here are two must-see historical sites to check out when you visit Glen Canyon.

Defiance House

North of Lake Powell in Forgotten Canyon, approximately three miles up the middle fork, is Defiance House. Named in homage to its large pictograph of three warriors, Defiance House is the most well-preserved Anasazi dwelling in Glen Canyon. In fact, when it was discovered by archeologists in 1959, they were stunned and delighted. Not only were most of the roofs still in place, but inside the dwelling they found two intact red bowls that still contained food scraps. This is astounding given that the best estimates place occupancy of Defiance House between 1250 and 1285 A.D. Visitors are able to enter the Defiance House buildings through doorways or the ladder in the kiva.

Lees Ferry

Crossing the Colorado River was a monumental challenge for anyone heading West through AZ up until the late 1890s. Lees Ferry was named after John D. Lee, a Mormon leader who was asked to establish a ferry crossing that would allow for easy passage between the Mormon settlements in Utah and Arizona.

Although not many historic buildings remain at Less Ferry, the Lees Ferry Fort is still viewable to visitors today. Although originally a defensive fort, the Lees Ferry Fort was not a fort for long. The stone and wooden building has served as a trading post, residence, school, and mess hall in a few short years. In 1879, the Latter Day Saints Church purchased the ferry rights for the crossing from John Lee’s widow, Emma Lee, who had been running the ferry for years after her husband’s death. Visitors can view the stone ruins of the fort and take a short hike up to the original ferry crossing.

The historical sites of Glen Canyon offer visitors a glimpse into the lives of people who have called the area home over the past 2000 years. Visiting either of these sites on your way to Lake Powell is a great way to start your next houseboat vacation. If you are ready to book your houseboat vacation or have questions about houseboat rentals in AZ, we can help.