More Than We Could Have Expected
We had talked to a ranger about this hike on a prior trip and knew this was not a place we would ever find on our own. Don't ask us where it is, because there is no way I think we could find it again. It was something we really wanted to do, and she told us that if we emailed her before we came the next time, we could set up a time to meet to do a guided ranger hike.
Her promise held true, and before we knew it a few other visitors who showed up at the parking lot wished to join, so our small group set out. It was really nice meeting these other people and they had nice snacks and cold drinks to share. We were happy to share our trip with them.
We walked at a slow pace on a non-evident trail towards the general direction of some ruins. At this site we were able to look back and see the distance from here to the mountains and have a better understanding of the travel distance between villages in older times. There were small pieces of pottery in the dirt to look at and we spent a little time there before we moved on and up towards the promised petroglyph panel.
We stopped in a dry wash briefly and looked at shards of pottery that had been washed downstream in recent rains. There were some very pretty pieces with colors and with painting on them. We were a group that always had to stop and invenstigate and take our time. It was a good group.
The petroglyph, which was nicknamed Igor, was pretty prominent when we came up and around from the dry wash. Near him were the more expected size petroglyphs. Many were similar to ones we had seen before, but there were a few, like a repeating square pattern like a pattern on a blanket, that were new to us.
The petroglyph panel was dense with art and we were surrounded with detail. We spent a lot of time just sitting around and looking at the images. As the sun moved, and the shadows changed, older ones became more evident. We spent maybe an hour at this site, and our half day trip, we decided, would become a full day trip. All were in agreement.
While in the area, we looked at rock that was worn out in grooves. It was an old grinding stone used by the Native Americans in the past. They grooves were very deep and it was very obvious.
Our final stop was at a site near some rocks where our guide had found some beads before. We found lots of pottery, and some shells that were items of trade, but the beads were elusive. It was a lot of fun, like being archaeologists. I felt like everything we found should go into a museum, but I now understand that this place is the museum and that these items belong here for the next person to find, and for all who follow.
Our guide told us how she once found pieces of a pot or a jug, I can't recall which, piece by piece, and then when she found all the pieces, she buried it back. I liked that story. On the way out I found an old tool propped up in the grass. it was a pretty awesome find, at least we though so. I left it there for you to find next.