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Rattlesnake - Perry Tank Canyon Ruin Loop - 5 members in 10 triplogs have rated this an average 3.8 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Mar 14 2018
Steph_and_Blak
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 Guides 98
 Routes 59
 Photos 2,511
 Triplogs 175

70 male
 Joined Nov 21 2015
 Grand Junction,
Rattlesnake - Perry Tank Canyon Ruin LoopCamp Verde, AZ
Camp Verde, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 14 2018
Steph_and_Blake
Hiking1.90 Miles 57 AEG
Hiking1.90 Miles   1 Hour   15 Mns   2.53 mph
57 ft AEG      30 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Having been advised by a fellow HAZ-er (the dude that's been up on Perry Mesa a kabillion times), that there's interesting "stuff" near Rattlesnake Ruins, we couldn't resist. That and the name. Gotta' be a story behind the name. The drive out was longer than the hiking time, but it was fun to watch the cows watch us attempt to negotiate the bumpy road. The ruins were similar to the others we'd seen in the past few days, but the pottery pieces were considerably larger. But we still didn't find any with designs or multi-colors. We tried to visualize the racetracks, but couldn't. On the circle back to the truck we came across a few petroglyphs and numerous metates. One rock had four metates and was sitting under a big juniper. We wondered if the great-great-great grandfather of the current juniper was providing shade when the metates were formed. And we wondered about the conversations that took place around that rock. "Hey, Judy. How's your sister doing? Still getting married to that fella' from the Valley? What's his name again? How's Bob's back? I hear it's still troubling him after dragging that deer up from the bottom of Lousy Canyon. Tell him I said "hi". And your daughter, Lisa. I saw that bowl she's workin' on. Nice stuff!"
_____________________
Stephanie and Blake Barnard
Mar 06 2016
trekkin_gecko
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 Guides 5
 Routes 352
 Photos 4,256
 Triplogs 2,712

61 female
 Joined Nov 17 2008
 phoenix, az
Rattlesnake - Perry Tank Canyon Ruin LoopCamp Verde, AZ
Camp Verde, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 06 2016
trekkin_gecko
Hiking6.74 Miles 703 AEG
Hiking6.74 Miles
703 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners partners
AZWanderingBear
Hansenaz
johnlp
Petrophile
tibber
first, a tibber style intro:
a month ago, johnlp and i hiked up to perry mesa from the agua fria river
didn't know what to look for in such a vast area, so we didn't explore
we knew that hansenaz has spent a lot of time up there, so we (i) strongly hinted that we would enjoy going up there with him sometime
others chimed in, so steve graciously organized a hike for us
he picked a variation of this loop and we all met up for the long drive to the trailhead via bloody basin road
new country for me, and beautiful wide open spaces in the agua fria national monument
got going mid morning, heading first for perry windmill, then down along rattlesnake canyon
found plenty of petroglyphs, metates, a few manos, pottery sherds, and quartz flakes
arrived at the first set of ruins which were quite overgrown with cactus, agave and catsclaw
wandered down to bob's tank, then went back to the creek, where we had lunch at a pool
dropped down the creek to another pool below deepening canyon walls, then climbed out to the north
headed toward the power lines, eventually finding the other set of ruins, also quite overgrown
nice petroglyphs in this area, too
headed back across the mesa to the vehicles, and had snacks and beverages courtesy of angela
the drive seemed to go more quickly on the way back
enjoyed seeing more of this area, and hiking with some new folks
thanks for the ride in, steve, and for putting this together
a great sample of the area
Culture
Culture
Windmill
Named place
Named place
Bobs Tank
_____________________
1 archive
Mar 06 2016
johnlp
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 Guides 1
 Routes 9
 Photos 4,297
 Triplogs 3,422

62 male
 Joined Mar 16 2008
 chandler,az
Rattlesnake - Perry Tank Canyon Ruin LoopCamp Verde, AZ
Camp Verde, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 06 2016
johnlp
Hiking6.74 Miles 703 AEG
Hiking6.74 Miles
703 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners partners
AZWanderingBear
Hansenaz
Petrophile
tibber
trekkin_gecko
It's always nice to see a new area and meet new people. And to walk in the company of accomplished finders of all things historical.

Our group of eight flanked out scouring the route for glyphs, ruins, and artifacts while enjoying the uique landscape. We were not disappointed. Wonderful trip.

Thanks Hansenaz for the organizational effort and making the long drive to Perry Mesa. Nice to again see those I know and meeting those I didn't. Great group! :)
Flora
Flora
Claret Cup Cactus
Named place
Named place
Perry Tank Canyon
_____________________
“Good people drink good beer.” Hunter S Thompson
Mar 06 2016
tibber
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 Guides 21
 Routes 580
 Photos 26,528
 Triplogs 881

64 female
 Joined Feb 26 2004
 Phoenix, AZ
Rattlesnake - Perry Tank Canyon Ruin LoopCamp Verde, AZ
Camp Verde, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 06 2016
tibber
Hiking6.25 Miles 503 AEG
Hiking6.25 Miles
503 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners partners
AZWanderingBear
Hansenaz
johnlp
Petrophile
trekkin_gecko
Thanks Steve for putting this together. Thanks Wade for driving me and I was glad I got to enjoy the scenery by not driving. Thanks to Mike and Oli for spotting all sorts of cool stuff and staying behind with me a time or two and being excited for me that I found a somewhat obscure glyph all by myself :) . Mike gets the blue ribbon for the best glyph of the day though!

Now THAT was some rough off trail hiking, like atop Bluff Spring Mountain with the grass that hides the rocks that hides the cactus. And there was never a lasting moment of smooth hiking; quite the workout... kind of like hiking in sand. The day got off to a good start in the scenery department with a look-see at the windmill; it was short and stout and stocky but probably had to be to hold up those gigantic blades that were whirling around pretty fast.

We crossed to the southside of Perry Tank canyon and started heading west, no one sure of where we were going; well except Steve ;) . All we knew is that we were making a loop around part of this canyon/dry creek and would stop to visit some ruins and glyphs. I think it turned out much better than I imagined because we saw much more of what I expected with the first being an awesome glyph across the canyon that Mike found and most of us had to backtrack to see. And then back on our way until we got close to another rock cropping which had lots of glyphs and some metates scattered about as well.

Mike and Oli were like kids in a candy store as they went up, down, thru and around this area. Actually it was somewhat like hiking with a married couple as Oli would say come over here while Mike was still back investigating and photographing another site and Oli would say but this is better etc. They kept this enthusiasm up the entire time and this is from guys that see glyphs all the time. However, they were quite gracious in sharing their finds with me as I wander around a bit aimlessly. But all of a sudden we were separated from the rest of the group. I saw the rest of the group up on a ridge so started hiking that way, occasionally glancing around to see if there were glyphs on the rocky areas I would cross through.

I eventually caught up to the group as they were making their way to the first set of ruins. Really wasn't a lot there but there were the normal suspects of metates and manos and small rock walls and some glyphs and lots of sherds. The others went down to a lake that I didn't know was there as I arrived late so we then headed back, kind of the way we came but closer to the canyon cliff. I spotted a tank ahead but we would end up hiking past that but not before a stop at a rock outcropping were we saw lots more metates. The cloud cover was more deep now and it was windy and a tad chilly but as we headed back up the canyon and down toward the drainage, the wind seemed less.

We arrived at a pool of water where we had a quick break. I sat across from what I dubbed the glyph diver. There were quite a few glyphs on the wall at the other side of the pool.

Steve too would point out the less obvious where you could see a faint metate or glyph and told us about the agave gardens. Loved the info about the agave gardens that the Hohokam had made between settlements. I read:
The Hohokam moved volcanic rocks ranging in size from cobbles to boulders to the edge of the mesa. They heaped the rocks into piles and then planted agaves among them. No one knows for sure what advantages were to be gained from such techniques. It is suggested that the rock piles may have served to conserve precious moisture around the plants during the hot, dry summers or to provide a source of radiant heat during cold snaps in winter.

We then came upon the largest rooms of ruin that we would see. There were sherds everywhere. I walked all the way around before I realized no one else was really following. So I traced my steps back and saw Kelly on the ledge of the canyon. So I walked where she was at and then saw the others down on some other outcropping. I attempted to get down there but since the route wasn't obvious and others were crossing over below, I decided to give up on that venture.

As I was trying to get down to the area where everyone seemed to be heading I took a header :stretch: while trying to get over a rock and my face slid down a cane cholla cactus. Just not anything you can do when that motion begins. It's funny though as I try to recover from this type of event (2nd in two Sundays), it takes a bit to assess the situation and then arise to address it. In this case, the cholla needles sticking in my face. So I slowly felt around and removed the cholla as best I could and then started to head down to where Kelly was. I told her what happened and I think she pulled out a couple needles and then made me use her alcohol squares to my burning face which of course made it burn even more, ha!

Now Kelly kindly took me back to some glyphs they got to see as they had walked past where I had hiked down to at this point. Well that was a nice reward for my pain. Kelly stayed with me now until I crawled up off the canyon cliff side but not before seeing some more awesome glyphs. She got a great picture of me that I edited and posted up on FB; everybody loved my Vanna impersonation. It was a little tricky on this cliff side but we eventually got up to flat ground.

By this time, everyone realized Wade was MIA. I deduced right away that he had gone back to the jeep but I sent a text in case he had his phone with him. Wade was nursing a blistered foot from his 20 mile hike the past week. We eventually started to head back over this rocky terrain. Soon we would see Wade's jeep about 3/4 mile away. I considered hiking over to the jeep, there's beer, but johnlp said it was further than it looked so I continued with the rest of the gang as we looked for the road veering left, then right, then under a fence until finally we saw the vehicles.

And though the miles were few, the terrain a bit rugged, we got to see so much stuff :y: . Much more than I anticipated; such a rich ruin, metate, petroglyph, scenic environment. Thank you Steve, it was awesome! Good to hike with johnlp, trekkin gecko and Wade and Thx to Kelly for helping me out. Nice to meet the new folks too. I also got a nice education today.

Awh yes, the videos. Well I just finished with Dome Panorama videos so I'm probably a week away from posting videos for this event. 3-16-2016 and here are your videos:
the drive, Perry Tank Creek, the glyphing begins https://youtu.be/-8 ... qbTM
continuing down canyon, first set of ruins https://youtu.be/fC ... v7jo
to the pool, down the creek to the tank https://youtu.be/h3 ... Qx0Y
from the tank to the main ruins https://youtu.be/vF ... F2P4
main ruins and cliffside​ https://youtu.be/NJ ... YRrI
Flora
Flora
Claret Cup Cactus
Culture
Culture
Windmill
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
_____________________
For me, sometimes it's just as much about the journey as the destination.
Oh, and once in awhile, don't forget to look back at the trail you've traveled.
1 archive
Mar 06 2016
Hansenaz
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 Guides 4
 Routes 162
 Photos 6,330
 Triplogs 374

67 male
 Joined Apr 06 2005
 Phoenix, AZ
Rattlesnake - Perry Tank Canyon Ruin LoopCamp Verde, AZ
Camp Verde, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 06 2016
Hansenaz
Hiking7.00 Miles 750 AEG
Hiking7.00 Miles   6 Hrs      1.17 mph
750 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
AZWanderingBear
johnlp
Petrophile
tibber
trekkin_gecko
I'm used to wandering around Perry Mesa by myself, occasionally with my wife, so it was a unique experience to be there with a crowd. But a good crowd it was, including many of my "previously virtual" HAZ friends. We spread out, covered a lot of ground, and found plenty of interesting things to look at. For me the highlights were some unexpected early finds [ photo ] , [ photo ] , the fantastic glyphs below Pueblo Pato [ photo ] , and the "arrow straightener rock" I walked right by at the ruin [ photo ] .

I note that Kelly's triplog comment the drive seemed to go more quickly on the way back means it's a long drive in. I learned that other people are much better at finding stuff, photographing stuff, and composing triplogs and photosets than me.

But I think we had a lot of fun and it was nice to share the day.
_____________________
Mar 26 2015
Hansenaz
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 Guides 4
 Routes 162
 Photos 6,330
 Triplogs 374

67 male
 Joined Apr 06 2005
 Phoenix, AZ
Rattlesnake - Perry Tank Canyon Ruin LoopCamp Verde, AZ
Camp Verde, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 26 2015
Hansenaz
Hiking5.92 Miles 756 AEG
Hiking5.92 Miles   4 Hrs   8 Mns   1.76 mph
756 ft AEG      46 Mns Break
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I took my two boys visiting from their frozen environs up to Perry Mesa to thaw out. We walked (roughly) to PTCR (aka Pueblo Pato) and then over toward Rattlesnake Ruins before looping back.

The trip included some side exploring and we found some habitation and petroglyph sites I hadn't been to before.

A nice day out with plenty to see: the petroglyphs at the main ruin site are the highlight....and the pie in Rock Springs.
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1 archive
Oct 05 2013
Hansenaz
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 Guides 4
 Routes 162
 Photos 6,330
 Triplogs 374

67 male
 Joined Apr 06 2005
 Phoenix, AZ
Middle Perry Tank Creek, AZ 
Middle Perry Tank Creek, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Oct 05 2013
Hansenaz
Hiking5.70 Miles
Hiking5.70 Miles   5 Hrs   15 Mns   1.09 mph
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
I wanted to have a look at the pools (plainly visible on satellite maps) that sit in the canyon bottom below the large rim-side ruins, Perry Tank Canyon and Rattlesnake, in the middle of Perry Mesa.

I dropped into the canyon just below the main Rattlesnake pool - I had walked down the upper part of the creek to this point a couple weeks ago. As I traveled below this pool the terrain was rocky and there were only a few petroglyphs - a preview that the ancient inhabitants didn't spend a lot of time along this stretch.

A good waypoint for this area is the power line crossing. The first "big" pool is reached just before the lines pass overhead. The canyon takes a left turn here and there is a substantial drop to the pool. Though there is a nice wall next to the pool, I didn't see any petroglyphs.

Continuing under the lines to the next pool the canyon bottom changes dramatically from a jumble of boulders to scoured bedrock. Don't know the geological classification but this is nice red rock with white veins. The 2nd pool (about 500' below the Perry Tank Canyon Ruin) is under another big pour off. This is a pretty wild looking place and petroglyphs are pretty unlikely. I had planned to climb back to the mesa from near here so I didn't try to go to the pool level and it didn't look very easy. There was a fair amount of broken pottery at the top though - possibly tossed from the cliff top high above. I don't think the Perry Mesans bothered with these pools since there were easier-to-reach water sources upstream.

I exited the canyon up an overgrown and rocky break to the Rattlesnake side. I took some time to walk the perimeter of the ruins and found a few glyphs, metates, and grinding slicks. Then I looped back to the car.
Geology
Geology
Obsidian
Culture
Culture
Rock Slick
Named place
Named place
Brooklyn Peak Perry Mesa
_____________________
Sep 14 2013
Hansenaz
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 Guides 4
 Routes 162
 Photos 6,330
 Triplogs 374

67 male
 Joined Apr 06 2005
 Phoenix, AZ
Upper Perry Tank Creek, AZ 
Upper Perry Tank Creek, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Sep 14 2013
Hansenaz
Hiking3.50 Miles
Hiking3.50 Miles   3 Hrs   30 Mns   1.00 mph
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
I like to look around on Perry Mesa and I figured this would be an interesting walk.

The Perry Tank Windmill is at the head of this Agua Fria side canyon. The wash "digs" gradually, and within a mile or two is ~500' deep as it drops from the windmill. There are large Perry Mesan ruins on both sides of the canyon and I know from a previous trip (lower in the canyon) that the ancient inhabitants spent time near the "permanent" pools and left petroglyphs and bedrock metates.

Bloody Basin Rd. and the minor Perry Mesa dirt roads have suffered from the recent rains but had mostly dried out. The wash itself was fairly wet making more pools than usual...no problems for a walker though in this shallow part of the canyon.

I know from previous visits along the west-side edge that the inhabitants did a lot of grinding (metates galore) and that the petroglyphs there are faded, suggesting (to me anyway) that they are older than many of the other local ones.

As I started down the wash I very soon started to find bedrock metates (mostly ovals, a few circles) and faint glyphs. I passed several pools and in almost every case I found petroglyphs. Some of these were very old - no color at all, just texture. I continued to the main pool, the only one I'd been to before. This is an impressive place with a high walled ruin hidden by trees and a lot of faded glyphs on the rock wall above the brown pool (last time it was green).

I planned to go further but I had seen enough for one day and looped back to the car.
Culture
Culture
Inscriptions Windmill
_____________________
Nov 17 2012
Hansenaz
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 Guides 4
 Routes 162
 Photos 6,330
 Triplogs 374

67 male
 Joined Apr 06 2005
 Phoenix, AZ
Joes Hill, AZ 
Joes Hill, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Nov 17 2012
Hansenaz
Hiking8.50 Miles
Hiking8.50 Miles   5 Hrs      1.70 mph
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
My plan was to circle around Joes Hill staying mainly on the rim of Perry Mesa and find some seldom visited Indian ruins.

I parked at Perry Mesa Windmill, for details of this approach see the Rattlesnake - Perry Tank Canyon Ruin Loop description. I stayed near the west rim of the deepening Perry Tank Canyon keeping higher than on my previous trip. Doing this I deliberately missed a lot of petroglyphs and bedrock metates - I was anticipating a long day. When I passed the point where I'd previously descended and crossed the canyon I dropped a bit lower and found another fantastic "kitchen" area containing at least 20 worn grooves atop a rock outcrop with petroglyphs on the creek-facing side. The concentration of metates along this side of the canyon is much higher than anywhere else I've seen and the only explanation is that scores of women must have been at work at the same time. Unfortunately the large petroglyph panel is faded and so not impressive.

Continuing along I came to the two main Rattlesnake ruins. These are more impressive in the satellite pictures than when visited - mainly overgrown and few recognizable walls. Plenty of pottery on the ground though and I found one interesting circular piece with a hole in it. When leaving the 2nd ruin I slipped on a loose rock - pretty common on Perry Mesa terrain - but this time I fell awkwardly on to some rocks. Feeling dumb and bruised, I continued on...

I contoured west and then north passing two more small ruins. The ruins are almost always marked by a concentration of sherds, flaked quartz, and rockpiles (collapsed walls). I continued to a nice overlook of Perry Tank Canyon - a circle of rocks was at the overlook.

Next I cut across the flank of Joes Hill heading toward the rim above the Agua Fria River. This is seldom visited (except by cows and pronghorns) but like most of Perry Mesa bits of pottery are scattered almost everywhere. I found another small ruin at the Agua Fria rim and continued south, but the pains from my tumble were starting to get to me.

I decided I needed to head back and the shortest route was right over the top of Joes Hill. Other than being the local high point, Joes Hill is notable as the source of the volcanic rock which covers the area - but there's hardly any reason to walk up it unless its the way home. Between the top and Perry Mesa Windmill I came across another area with a lot of pottery pieces but I didn't see any walls.

I'll have to come back another day to sample the second half of my aborted circumambulation of Joes Hill.
Fauna
Fauna
Tarantula
Culture
Culture
Benchmark
_____________________
May 12 2012
Hansenaz
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 Guides 4
 Routes 162
 Photos 6,330
 Triplogs 374

67 male
 Joined Apr 06 2005
 Phoenix, AZ
Rattlesnake - Perry Tank Canyon Ruin LoopCamp Verde, AZ
Camp Verde, AZ
Hiking avatar May 12 2012
Hansenaz
Hiking5.50 Miles 750 AEG
Hiking5.50 Miles   4 Hrs      1.38 mph
750 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
The road gets a little sketchy but its not too rocky and I made it to within a few hundred yards of Perry Windmill in a Subaru. It's a pretty remote area so I was surprised to see a mini-convoy of 5 or 6 heavier duty vehicles farther along the road ahead of me. When I caught up with them later I found it was the Dewey-Humboldt Historical Society out on a monthly exploration.

I had planned to just contour around the south side of the canyon and see what I could find. I was very happy to find many petroglyphs (though mostly faded) and many, many smooth areas in the stone where food was ground in the distant past. I made a couple attempts to find actual ruins but no dice...after getting home and looking at my path on Google Earth it looks like I must have skirted two ruin areas. I should have looked harder.

When I reached a path of disturbed grass I took it down into the canyon and caught up with the Historical Society folks. They must have known where they were going because it was a very nice area at the bottom with pools, many (faded) glyphs, and the most intact ruin I've seen in the area. I continued down the canyon for a while seeing only the occasional petroglyph so I headed up the other side so I could walk over to the Perry Tank Canyon Ruins. Its a pretty easy walk to the power towers and on to the ruins. I've been there a couple times recently so I skipped the excellent petroglyphs below the rim and just poked around the perimeter on top. There's plenty to see but the highlight really is the well preserved petroglyphs below.

I headed cross country toward my car completing the loop. Though 100deg in Phoenix it wasn't too bad on the Mesa...about 8deg cooler. I enjoyed the loop and stumbling across interesting stuff.
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average hiking speed 1.52 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.

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