Despite all it had to offer, in time Walnut Canyon became a difficult place for farmers to live. Drier, colder conditions meant crop failures. More people and diminished resources meant nutritional stress, disease, and conflict.
However, these stressful time brought new means of coping. By 1250, people joined others in bigger villages to the south and east where archeological evidence suggests new beliefs and rituals arose.
"Many reasons are given for clan migration in Hopi traditional history, including drought, famine, cold weather,...disease, warfare,...and natural disasters. However, from a Hopi perspective, the primary reason for migration is the fulfillment of a spiritual covenant....The religious intentionality of Hopi migration receives scant attention in most archeological reconstructions of the past."
From: Nuvatukya'ovi, Palatsmo niqw Wupatki. Hopi History, Culture, and Landscape by Ferguson and Loma'omvaya, in Sunset Crater Archaeology: The History of a Volcanic Landscape, Synthesis and Conclusions, edited by M. D. Elson; Anthropological Papers, No. 37. Center for Desert Archaeology, Tuscon, 2005.