Greg Joel and myself decided to do a double this day, we started with the Nordhoff-Hope site and finished with the Coon Creek dwelling.A good pair to visit in the same day since they are practically within sight of each other.We took the 4-runner up the mountain (cool and windy) Our goal was not only to visit the sight but access the penthouse suite at the sight. In reading other posts it seemed obvious that it was not climbable (at least not safely) so (here's your first hint) we decided to do it the way the indians would have. There is one more hint in one of the photos. It was still a little nerve racking accessing the ruins. While the ruins themselves were not the best in the area, the view gets my vote for the "best view from a cliff dwelling" I know everyone has a different comfort level when climbing rocks but even when we accessed the top dwelling we didnt see any path that a sane person would try to access free climbing. As far as the upper dwelling the photos will tell most of the story, no connecting caves, just a half moon alcove in the cliff. The one disappointment at this site was the quantity of graffiti in the upper dwelling. I looked around and the only art was a good 500 years away from being called anything but graffiti. the oldest date we saw was 1945, no dates after HAZ was started, I think this site attracts good people.All the walls on the site were built without mortar of any kind, unlike the other ruins in the area, most of the walls along the base of the cliff have fallen over, the original site appears to be larger than ones first impression. Once you start deciphering the rock piles it becomes more clear. It was easier to see from a perch up on the cliff side where you could see the outlines of the ruins. I accessed the room that Bart01 climbed to awhile back (not too technical freeclimbing). on this ascent "NO BEES WERE HARMED" BTW Bart01 I took a photo while hanging off the cliff below the ruin of what I believe is a ringtail cat perch. there was scat and pieces of honeycomb lying about. I think you might have your revenge. I also snapped a few pic of cactus flowers on the same cliff, I'm starting to make a habit of taking pics with one hand on the camera and the other hangin onto cliff sides (might end up with this on my headstone) Joel rousted a Rattler in rock pile , but we were never able to put eyes on it. We had a few humming birds flying around and they even visited us on the upper ruin. I also witnessed a falcon chasing a raven that it eventually ran to ground (I was not close enough to view the gruesome details) almost forgot we saw a spot inside a fallen down ruin where someone or something was digging into the floor (maybe a bear) hopefully not someone digging for artifacts. note: I saw the same type of dig in one of the rooms at coon creek ruins later that day??? Great tip , well worth the visit, did I mention great views?? well if I didn't GREAT VIEWS!!!
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