|I-17 Exit 298 Hwy 179 to Sedona, AZ|| || |
|Hiking||1.00 Miles|| || |
|150 ft AEG|| || || |
|No Route Match||1st Trip Logged|
Northbound on I-17 at exit 298 (Hwy 179 to Sedona), off to the right(east) there is a very tall, narrow mesa. I've always wondered if there might be lookout ruin up there, given its proximity to Red Tank Draw, Sacred Mountain and the V-Bar-V site. On my way to explore Red Tank Draw again, I decided to give it a look see. At the 4 way stop, I turned right on the road toward Montezuma Well, came upon a pull-out at the base of the mesa. I could have gone that way up, but it looked like climbing up a steep 100 foot staircase. I drove a little further to the cattle guard and found a track to the west that followed a fence line about 1/3 mile where it deadended at a corral. Conveniently, there were gates to go through to the backside of the mesa, with what looked like a more pleasant route to the summit. Up I went, through various layers of sandstone and a black layer that had gypsum crystals eroding out. The top of the mesa was bigger than I expected, with a multiroom ruin. You could see the whole region from up there! Curiously, I didn't see any sherds. But I did find a pair of black socks and someone had hauled up plexiglass to one of the caves just below the summit. And, at sometime long ago, red sandstone had been hauled up and used in the wall building!