Mark Stiger presents not only an overview of past research conducted in the Basin but also the significant new findings and interpretations from his own research. Anchored in the massive body of data that was gathered by Stiger during eight years of work at Tenderfoot -- a large lithic-scatter site once categorised as 'insignificant' -- as well as comparable data from numerous other sites in the surrounding region, this important new contribution to archaeology in the southern Rocky Mountains uses an organisational approach to describe and interpret prehistoric cultural change across a wide area of western Colorado. Stiger examines discoveries made by other archaeologists during earlier excavations in the region and critiques the dominant traditional field methods and social explanations of prehistory. By using data recovered in multi-year repetitive surface collections, he questions the direct interpretation of survey data and explores the advantages of horizontally extensive block excavations.
He also investigates how dramatic environmental changes affected human adaptations by analysing the region's floral and faunal usage patterns and its natural history through paleoenvironmental evidence.<