The Sun Dagger Film

This classic, timeless film documents the extraordinary celestial calendar created by ancient North American Indians and rediscovered by artist Anna Sofaer, high on a butte in New Mexico. The “dagger” is presently the only known site in the world that marks the extreme positions of both the sun and moon. The film explores the complex culture of the ancestral Puebloan people of Chaco Canyon who constructed the calendar and thrived both spiritually and materially in the harsh environment of Chaco Canyon a thousand years ago.

Study guide available.



Rent and stream the full version on Vimeo CLICK HERE


“…as an astronomical and geometrical marvel, it ranks with the Pyramids and Stonehenge.”
Science 84

THE SUN DAGGER is a “must-buy” for school districts and public libraries.”
Media & Methods

“The multidisciplinary nature of this film makes it possible to use it in many classroom situations. The excellent teaching guide, written by Don Reid, vastly improves the film’s instructional value.”
Journal of College Science Teaching

“Both (versions) are excellent.”
Editor’s Choice, Science Books & Films

The Mystery of Chaco Canyon and The Sun Dagger are available for HOME use and for EDUCATIONAL use. The EDUCATIONAL version has an accompanying Teachers Study Guide. Half hour versions of both films are avaliable for teaching (please email [email protected] for this option).

The astonishing discovery of an ancient celestial calendar in Chaco Canyon, NM

58 minutes
(28-minute version available)
16mm available
Grade Level: Grades 7-12, College, Adult
US Release Date: 1983
Copyright Date: 1982
ISBN: 1-56029-320-9

Directed by Anna Sofaer and Albert Ihde
Produced by The Solstice Project
Narrated by Robert Redford


  • Blue Ribon, American Film Festival
  • CINE Golden Eagle
  • Margaret Mead Film Festival

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