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Seven Kivas - Cedar Mesa, UT

Guide 5 Triplogs  0 Topics
  3.3 of 5 
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HAZ reminds you to respect the ruins. Please read the Archaeological Resources Protection Act of 1979 & Ruins Etiquette
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Round Trip 2.9 miles
Trailhead Elevation 6,098 feet
Elevation Gain -648 feet
Accumulated Gain 700 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 3 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 6.4
Interest Ruins & Seasonal Creek
Backpack Possible - Not Popular
Dogs not allowed
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
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12  2016-09-08 Steph_and_Blake
20  2015-04-29 big_load
30  2013-10-19 CannondaleKid
25  2008-05-18
Valley of the Gods
Author CannondaleKid
author avatar Guides 43
Routes 141
Photos 21,934
Trips 2,261 map ( 17,564 miles )
Age 71 Male Gender
Location Mesa, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   May, Oct, Sep, Apr → Any
Seasons   Autumn
Sun  6:10am - 6:12pm
Official Route
0 Alternative

Short hike that can take hours
by CannondaleKid

Likely In-Season!
HAZ Patch
Overview: The Seven Kiva ruin is in Road Canyon in the Cedar Mesa Plateau of Utah. The ruin itself is situated along the north wall of Road Canyon and consists of the remains of seven kivas. This site is commonly referred to as an 'extensive' ruin site, at the time we visited the site two of the kivas were relatively complete while the others were in various states of destruction. And while there are chains to denote areas off-limits, by the amount of footsteps where they didn't belong I don't doubt the destruction is being hastened. As far as artifacts, other than a few dried cobs of corn there aren't any to be found.

Warning: Temperatures may reach 110 degrees in the summer so plan accordingly.

The ruins are very delicate so be careful, do not walk on the roofs of the kivas and stay out of the structures. It is easy enough to take photos by holding your camera through an opening without disturbing the structure. There are chains to stay behind, so please respect them and stay out of those areas.

History: While this area is steeped in history, I couldn't begin to touch the surface so I won't even attempt it. For those interested in 'digging' deeper a web search will provide plenty of information.

Hike: While there are two routes to Seven Kivas this description is the short hike for folks without the means or time to hike all the way in from the west end of Road Canyon.

From the trail-head on the along the south rim of Road Canyon you will drop down some 500 feet relatively quickly along a meandering path marked reasonably well with rock cairns and of course tons of footprints. It doesn't always work following the tracks of others as some deem to have gone off on a tangent. If it isn't wet, near the bottom I'd recommend walking down the slick-rock instead of the winding trail. We figured it out on the climb back up and it saved time and distance. As long as you pay a reasonable amount of attention you'll make your way down without getting lost. That said, it's pretty hard to get lost on this hike... first you simply descend to the bottom and once there you turn right and follow the canyon floor a few miles until you see the ruins on your left.

When you reach the ruin follow the signs and climb up from the right side, paying attention to avoid walking through the midden pile. As noted above,

The return trip is just a matter of following the same route back.

Water Sources: Seasonal

Camping: BLM permit is required for hiking as well as camping.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2013-10-25 CannondaleKid
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    High Clearance possible when dry

    To hike
    From Blanding, UT: Take Utah Route 95 west towards Natural Bridges. After passing Comb Ridge, turn south on UT261. Stay on UT261 until reaching Cigarette Springs Road, where you will turn left.

    From Kayenta, AZ: Take US163 north through Monument Valley and Mexican Hat. After passing through Mexican Hat, make a left onto UT261 (signed for Natural Bridges and Lake Powell). This route is not recommended for RVs or vehicles towing trailers, as it switchbacks up the sheer southern escarpment of Cedar Mesa in three miles of dirt road. It is passable, generally even in winter to passenger cars. After gaining the summit, head north on UT261 until reaching Cigarette Springs Road, where you will turn right.

    Follow Cigarette Springs Road (San Juan County Road 239) 6.2 miles to the spur road, wher you will turn the left. While driving very carefully you may make it to the spur road, the .8 mile spur road to the trail-head is definitely high-clearance. There is plenty of room to park here at the spur or the trail-head.
    page created by CannondaleKid on Oct 25 2013 6:52 pm
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