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Verde Valley Ruins Field Trip

Note: This post refers to an event that took place on Mar 23, 2013.

Clear Creek Cavates
Sacred Mountain

On March 23 and 24th Ken Zoll will led us to several spectacular ruins in the Verde Valley.

Saturday, March 23, Clear Creek Ruin Hike (six miles east of Camp Verde)

Meet at 8:30 am at the Verde Valley Archaeology Center, 385 S. Main St., Camp Verde. 

Park in the rear and enter through the door marked “Learning Center”.

Saturday morning we will visit Clear Creek Ruin with it’s noted cavates. It is a Sinaguan habitation site dating from about 750 AD to 1200 AD. The site includes  two-story cave dwellings along mesa ridge; 50-room pueblo on mesa top; 8-room pueblo with sunken kiva and enclosed ceremonial plaza; large dancing circle; sacred blow hole; 85’ serpent calendar geoglyph. Interesting article at http://campverdebugleonline.com/main.asp?SectionID=74&SubsectionID=114&ArticleID=34150.

Elevation change: 500 ft.  Difficulty: strenuous.  Duration: 3-4 hours
After lunch we will visit the nearby (and easily accessible) Wingfield Mesa Ruins. There is also an option to visit Montezuma’s Well on your own.

Sunday, March 24, Sacred Mountain Ruin Hike (10 miles southeast of the Village of Oak Creek)

Meet at 8:30 at the Sacred Mountain parking area. Take the Sedona exit (298) off of I-17 but go EAST (away from Sedona). Stay on the paved road that takes you to the Beaver Creek Campgound. Go past the camp ground, over Beaver Creek, and past the V Bar V entrance about 1/2 mile. The parking area is on the left.

Features:  Sinagua habitation site dating from about 1100 AD to 1250 AD.  60-room pueblo (three blocks of 20 rooms) on mesa top with plaza on mesa top; early classic period Hohokam ball court (Wilcox) at base of mesa; mesa surrounded by many agricultural features (Fish & Fish).

Elevation change: 100 ft.  Difficulty: moderate.  Duration: 2-3 hours

Optional Stop on Sunday – V Bar V Discovery Days – V Bar V Heritage Site – 9:30 am to 3:00 pm

Annual event featuring exhibits by Coconino National Forest, primitive tool making, mountain men encampment, etc.
Accommodation Options:

Camping. The Forest Service Camp at Clear Creek is first choice. There are only 18 sites and it is first come, first served. Another option is the Beaver Creek Campground. Once determined how many are camping we can make a choice between these two sites.


There are several chain motels in Camp Verde at the I-17 interchange (Day’s Inn, Super 8).  The hotel at the Cliff Castle Casino (Yavapai-Apache Nation owned) is also centrally located at the entrance to the Montezuma Castle National Monument.

What to bring. Lunches for both days, snacks, water, hiking boots, sunblock, hiking poles, camera, binoculars. Standard list. There is a restaurant across from the Verde Valley Archaeology Center which serves breakfast.

To register for the trip contact Katherine Cerino. There will be a 20 person limit.