I wanted to share images from a recent trip I took to the Aqua Fria National Monument. I had a great experience here and want to encourage you to go if you get the chance!
This Monument is located about 40 miles north of Phoenix in the beautiful Sonoran Desert. The 72,344-acre monument (managed by the Bureau of Land Management) was established to preserve hundreds of ancient sites – ruins, pictographs, petroglyphs -which are scattered around the hills and along the river.
Pueblo La Plata is one of the largest prehistoric archeological sites in the Aqua Fria National Monument- has at least 400 prehistoric sites. You’ll step back in time when you see the stone masonry pueblos, rock art, agricultural fields and the broken pottery that lies all around.
Between the years of 1250 and 1450, it’s estimated that as many as 3,000 people lived on this mesa. The reasons are not known why they left after A.D.1450.
Take your time when you go and just plan on making it a day trip. This area makes a great place to camp, bird watch, hike and just explore. We are fortunate that we have these National Monuments and I’m grateful for all the agencies/organizations that manage these lands for our enjoyment. There is a note about this at the site- but they really encourage folks not to destroy or take anything away from this place. It is amazing to see how these people lived off the land- no Frys or Walmart to go to.