April 22, 2012 The Palatki Ruins

Today we made our way north on SR89A to Forest Road 525 to the Palatki Ruins in the Coconino National Forest.   Forest Road 525 is all dirt and the Palatki Ruins were 7 miles down that road…and the scenery – OH MY!


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And we arrived:

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This site consists of two areas – the rock art and the ruins and of course the incredibly beautiful red rocks.  Here is more information:

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Pictures from the parking lot:

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Our first stop was at the visitor center where we found out that we should have made reservations.  As luck would have it, we were early enough to get into the first time slot.    We were first guided to do the Rock Art Trail where a guide met us at the top.

This is known as the grotto where many of the petroglyphs and pictographs are located.  Initially the rock art was thought to have been done by the Sinaqua between 1150 and 1300 AD.  But in doing more research they have found that some of this rock art dates back to prehistoric times.


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Notice the scratching in the wall below.  They have found this in a number of areas near the cliff dwellers.  It is thought that when a young woman got married, they would go to the sacred areas, scratch the rocks and collect the powder.  The powder was then made into a drink which they believed would make them more fertile.

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From there we walked back and took the path to the ruins where another guide met us.  On the way we saw this little one:

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And this beautiful butterfly:

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The trail to the ruins:

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The ruins – number one:

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The second set of ruins – this one was hidden from view:

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In each of these ruins, they felt that there were nine family groups each.  There were other ruins found in this little area and they think it was a small community of Sinaquas.

In the photos below, do you see the black lines?  When there is rain or a heavy snow melt in the mountains, these are waterfalls.  The cliff dwellings are below and they have found types of catch basins built – for themselves, their animals or perhaps their crops.

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More information can be found here:





I love seeing these ruins and hope to visit more in the weeks ahead.  

There is another ruin area near here but by the time we finished it was getting near 90 and I know I could not do any more walking in the heat.   So we made our way back with a short stop for our picnic lunch here:

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Back in civilization, we explored Cornville, Cottonwood, and Clarkdale. Two years ago we stayed in Cottonwood and explored many of the National Monuments.  There was so much more to explore which is why we are back – :-))).

Back home, we made a few phone calls and relaxed in the air conditioning.  It is suppose to get cooler later this week – YEA!

“A birth certificate shows you were born.
A death certificate shows you have died.
A photo album shows you have lived. “

Enjoy today.

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