Spruce Tree House is our favorite site in Mesa Verde National Park, and unfortunately, as of June 2016 the house is closed due to instable rocks. Make sure to check the condition of this hike before you go. Luckily, you can still overlook Spruce House from the museum, and it is spectacular to look at.
The reason Spruce Tree House is our favorite is because it is so beautiful. It is built in one of the deeper crevices of rock and the fronts of the ruins stand out in layers against the sandstone. There is also a kiva with a complete roof, the only one we know of in the park. Back in the days when this hike was open, you were actually allowed to go in the kiva, and we hope this is still a part of the tour when and if Spruce House opens in the future.
The hike to Spruce Tree House is also easy. There is none of the ladder climbing or squeezing through tunnels of Balcony House, nor is there the more than two mile long hike like Long House. Even the down and up part of Spruce House seems easy compared to Cliff Palace.
According to park literature, Spruce Tree House is the best preserved cliff dwelling at Mesa Verde. If you only get a chance to do one of the ranger-led tours in Mesa Verde, make it Spruce Tree House!