The Verde Hohokam built this village on top of St Clair Mountain around 1100 and 1300 A.D. It is also known as Brazaletes Pueblo, named by an excavator who found numerous bracelets on an arm bone during an excavation of the site back in the 1960s. Many of the bracelets found were made with shells from the Sea of Cortez.
Based on research, the pueblo contained 92 rooms scattered across the summit and surrounding slopes. The area was also a burial site.
The trek to reach the ruins isn't long but there are some steep sections. Many of the foundations are being consumed by nature's plant life but one can certainly still explore them. I suggest good shoes and either pants or high socks!
I found countless pieces of pottery but no glyphs. They're supposed to be there, I looked everywhere, to no avail! In spite of that it was still a cool spot to explore.
Bartlett Dam Road is a beautiful drive on its own... So a quick side trip down Horseshoe Dam Road to see this site was easy enough. With an hour of time and a mile of climb, some beautiful views of an ancient civilization can be done easily. Google research indicates this was a 92 room dwelling. Plenty of sherd to see and some nice views - especially when the sky returns out of this haze. Crested saguaro also worth a stop on the way in or out.
I'm hooked on hiking to ruins so I decided to take the long drive, short hike, to St. Clair Mountain near Horseshoe Dam. I wasn't disappointed. I'd been to Horseshoe Dam couple times but didn't know there's were ruins near by, it's a beautiful area and we got a touch of rain on our way up, followed by crisp, clear skies. The road to dam is a mix of paved and well graded dirt. My belief is that the Indians used this site to store food in pots cuz there were so many sherds and the structures were not elaborate nor was there any signs of leisure activities such as petroglyphs -- I believe they just needed a place to store/hide food from invaders.
After checking out St Clair Peak, we drove over to see St Clair Mountain. I told Hippy and Devin to have low expectations. I didn't know what to expect...
We parked at a pull out and were surprised to find a trail leading up directly to the ruins. Along the way up there is an archeology sign asking us to respect the area. We continued on and finally caught a good glimpse of the ruins and were pleasantly surprised. There are a bunch of rock walls and it becomes obvious this was a large complex. We spent a good chunk of time exploring the area and scavenging. Pot Shards are everywhere! This ruin is impressive!
After we had our fill we returned to the vehicle and made our way back to the city. These ruins are fantastic and would be great to bring out of town guests to. It's an easy hike and the views are spectacular! The ruins were a treat and shards are scattered all over. Very cool!
Second ruins visit of the day. 9L, DB and I parked and headed up the easy little trail, we weren't expecting much but even if we were our minds would have been blown.
The Ruins Seldom Seen book mentioned pottery shards/shreds "littering" each room...I thought it was an exaggeration... really, littering is the best way to describe it. Before you're even up close to the first walls on your initial approach you'll find beautifully crafted shards at your feet!!
Its room after room after room up here! And the views from the top are lovely!
For such an easy drive and short hike this is way worth it all, its so lovely I'd be willing to pay to visit it.
We met an AZ Site Steward on the way down she was very nice and asked how how the brazeletes were doing today.
Went out the other night to do some herping at the base of st clair. After viewing all of Gummo's successful trips I had to build some of my own. Thanks for all the tips Gummo. Got there after sun down and right when I started looking around I found a scorpion. There sure is alot of stuff moving around on a partially moonlit night. Mostly bull frogs. the highlight was a baby rattler. It was short lived as he made his way back into the shrubs.
Also threw in 2 pics from reach 11 that werent worthy of their own album
On my way back from Horseshoe Dam did a quick trip up SCM and checked out the walls.
average hiking speed 1.25 mph
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.