Sonoran Desert

"Eagletail" Wilderness Petroglyphs

On a cold and overcast morning in the winter of 2013, I did a little hike in the Eagletail Wilderness just west of Phoenix. I don’t get over to Arizona that often and a desert full of tall saguaro cactus is a different experience for me. This is fantastically scenic country.

After crossing open Sonoran Desert, I entered into a canyon cut into some low-lying volcanic hills. The petroglyphs started immediately and there were far more of them than I expected. This is an impressive site. As I hiked down the canyon, the walls of both sides were covered in petroglyphs. In one rock shelter, I spotted some pictographs; faded beyond recognition by exposure to the elements.

I expected to see a spring or some source of water here, but I didn’t. If you venture out into this desolate wilderness, be sure to bring some water with you.

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About Guy Starbuck

Exploring the American West.
  • Nevada
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