Drove down to the Parsons Trailhead and hung out for awhile, watching the skies for raptors. The road to the river is closed until June. Saw one redtail hawk, but it was high and the picture turned out lousy. Gave up on seeing eagles and started back out, but decided to try one of the FS tracks that might lead to the white-topped mesa that has intrigued me for awhile.
The road was definitely a 4-wheeler, with big chunky rocks in places and some good climbs. I needed some fancy driving in one place to make a sharp turn downhill and miss the one foot drop off the rocks. My truck does just fine on these outings, but it would be easier in a lifted jeep due to the length of the vehicle. I got to another dropoff and surprise! there's a tent and a SUV. I guess that was the end of the road. I went back a few hundred yards to park, then started my trek to the mesa in search of ruins. This mesa looks like the one near V Bar V petroglyph site.
Up and down ravines, in and out of beavertail and ocotillo, I picked my way over to and up the mesa. On the way, I saw several large junipers that had been cut a long time ago. Curious, there isn't a road anywhere in sight. Could they have been used in a ruin or a mine? Up on top of the mesa, I didn't see ANY sign of prior habitation except for the deer, javalina, and coyote tracks. No sherds, no walls, nothing! I can check this one off my list.
Back down the way I came, sliding part of the way down on my behind (no pride, just cautious). Picked up a few cactus spines, but nothing serious. Back to the truck, safely down the FS road, back to Clarkdale. The horses were feeding by the road and tolerated my photos. There are no fences in this area and they wander back and forth across the road.