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Spur Cross to Cave Crk Petroglyphs, AZ
mini location map2020-12-06
5 by photographer avatarOregon_Hiker
photographer avatar
 
Spur Cross to Cave Crk Petroglyphs, AZ 
Spur Cross to Cave Crk Petroglyphs, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Dec 06 2020
Oregon_Hiker
Hiking7.26 Miles 543 AEG
Hiking7.26 Miles   4 Hrs   22 Mns   2.10 mph
543 ft AEG      55 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
This was a day hike with my daughter and her family starting at the entrance to the Spur Cross Conservation Area. Our destination was the well known petroglyphs about 3.75 miles up Cave Creek. The route starts out on a section of the Spur Cross Trail which follows the old Forest Service road #48 up Cave Creek ending at the boundary to the 6L Ranch. The petroglyphs are about 0.2 miles past the rusty gate and sign marking the ranch boundary. The 6L Ranch sign at the boundary proclaims it as "PVT Property - No Trespassing" but the sign is merely of historical significance. The old ranch property has been (or is in the process of being) returned to the Tonto Nat. Forest in a mining land swap deal.

The trail is well worn and maintained as it follows the old road to the Spur Cross Park boundary. From there the trail is not maintained but easy to follow on the old road bed until reaching a point about 0.8 miles past the turnoff to Cave Crk Trail #4. From there the old road has been washed out by numerous flash floods over the years and route finding can be a little tricky. Just follow the horse tracks left by almost daily expeditions to the petroglyphs by guided horse back tours. There are several creek crossings along the way but all were dry on this day due to the prolonged drought. We did see water in the creek bed in the narrows section of the canyon where the road/trail is cut into the side of the cliff on the east side of the canyon. Our only wildlife observations were numerous birds and a pack of Javalina scurrying up the hillside on the other side of the creek not far up the canyon from where we saw the water. There were also signs of cattle in that section of the canyon and one of the critters crashed through the brush as we approached. Some fairly recent fence mending has added a barbwire gate across the trail with a "keep closed" sign just pass the Trail #4 junction.

We stopped at the petroglyph boulders for a lunch time snack. That turned into a high calorie experience when my youngest granddaughter handed me a bag of her homemade cookies. After snooping around the boulders to find the embedded metates we started our return with me struggling to not get left in the dust.
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