Copyright 2011, CABS for Reflections From the Fence
You know how it is, the last moment, the last day, you make a great discovery. No, this is not research, this is traveling and sightseeing. Just 24 hours before we were scheduled to pull out of Camp Verde, we reviewed some of the travel literature , and realized we should see if we could find and visit the Indian ruins and pictograph site at Palatki. With a bit of internet snooping, it did not take me long to find out where it was and that we needed reservations. So, we called, figuring it was a no go. Surprise! WAHOOO! We scored space/tickets.
Knowing that the site was at least 7 miles off a paved road and forewarned that the road was rather, mmmm, rough, we allowed what we felt was plenty of time to drive there, and we still just made it in time for our reserved time. Seems that it took us about 45 minutes to drive that 7 miles. To illustrate how the Palatki site is really at the end of the road, I took a photo of the google map on the android (and of course, the reflection of Sony and Moi. LOL). That blue arrow at the end of Boynton Pass Rd, represents Big Butt sitting in the drive at the park.
See, we were at the end of the road, out in the middle of the desert. Way out!
Below, along the 7 mile drive, gorgeous red rock, formations always a delight, taking our breath away.
And, another formation:
The sign announcing, we have arrived:
Below, in this general area of the heritage site one will find the pictograph paintings. They have a volunteer stationed up there and he will accompany you on a short hike to the pictographs. You can walk fairly close, but, of course, are not allowed to touch. Photos are allowed, as many as you care to take. The volunteer on duty the day of our visit was quite knowledgeable and shared his knowledge very well indeed.
Below, this is the area of the ruins, a massive wall of red rock, and tucked in there, hidden behind some small trees are the ruins:
Let's put Sony to work, and show you the ruins again, a bit closer this time. Visitors are not allowed to get too close to the ruins, as the geologists are concerned that the loud cracking sounds heard over the last few years might mean that the stone over the ruins is not stable. Looking at all that stone, and thinking about how much it weighs, I don't have any problem zooming with Sony.
After visiting the ruins and hearing a lot of really neat facts from a volunteer, we hurried over to the pictograph area of the park, because it was almost hiking time. Below, other members of our group, hiking below an overhang of massive red stone. The pictographs are not far from here.
I have prepared another post just for the pictographs, so stay tuned, in the meantime, here is a photo taken from this side of the heritage site, looking back towards the ruins portion of the heritage site.
Breathtaking, isn't it?? Palatki is a special spiritual place, we were so thankful that we were able to gain tickets and access. And, yes, it was so worth that long bumpy, dusty ride out. We later learned of another ruins, Honanki, which was nearby. Sadly, we did not visit Honanki, but, if we ever get back to the area, you can bet we will.
* We visited the Palatki Heritage Site on April 17, 2011.