Took a hike today to look at some pictographs I had heard about in the Huachuca mountains of arizona .
I grabbed some grub and water, stashed it in my well used Camel back HAWG and hit the door.
Walking out to my Blazer I noticed that is was going to be another beautiful southern arizona day, Im not talking about places like tucson or phoenix, those places are horrible. The area Im talking about is Cochise county in the SE part of the state.
If I had to make a choice as to where I wanted to live permanently in the whole world, I would take the wide open spaces and clear blue skies of cochise county.
The Blazer seem to drive itself up to the trail head parking area, on the drive up I saw a few Mule deer and the odd horned toad on the road.
Upon arrival at the parking area I backed in , grabbed my gear and hit the trail.
While on the hike I ran into 2 Military Police customs officers on patrol in the back country, I informed them of what I was doing, and they told me that there are over 150 different archaeological sites on the Fort Huachuca Military Reservation.
That was an interesting bit of Information, I know the Chiricahua Apaches used these mountains to camp and hunt but never had permanent camps there, These sites must have been from paleo Indians. The type that drew the pictographs.
I continued on up the hill and toward the Pictograph sites, along the way I saw several sonoran coues deer - a sub species of the white tail.
Outside of the keys deer I believe it is the smallest of the white tail sub species, Im not sure tho..
I also saw a Lone Prong horned antelope.
Back in the 1990's there was an Antelope reintroduction project here in the Huachucas but I had not seen any for several years. It was my assumption that they had migrated toward mexico and the wilder parts of the desert. Apparently not!
Anyway, this guy had the most impressive set of horns I had ever seen on an Antelope.
For 7 years I had guided Big Game Hunts in Montana and New Mexico and saw some pretty Impressive Antelope but this old boy "takes the cake" in Horn size.
I dont speak horn or antler talk anymore but it suffice to say that horn wise - He was Bad.
Other animals I saw were numerous Rabbits, Hawks, a rattler, humming birds and the most butter flies I have ever seen.
When I got back home and did a net search I found out that Cochise county Arizona has 38% of all the butter files found in North America, and the Huachuca mountains are the Humming bird capitol of the USA.
Anyway, on to the site! After about a 3 mile hike from the parking area I came upon the sign marking the Pictograph site.
I hiked the short distance from the road to the pictographs, dropped my day pack and got out my camera.
There were only a few but they were interesting. Almost monochromatic in color, and looked like they were drawn by a 9 year old, there were spirals, eagles (thunder birds?) effigy men etc, kinda cool.
It is important to mention the difference between pictographs and petroglyphs. Pictos are Drawn onto the rocks and Petros are carved into the stone.
I snapped a few pictures, stowed away my camera, grabbed my pack and headed up the trail to the next site.
This site had only 3 pictographs visible, they were drawn in red on the tanish colored sand stone and you could see them pretty well.
The area where the pictographs are located is beautiful , it has plenty of water and great shelter in the form of overhangs. It is not surprising to me that the primitive peoples of the area chose this site to live in. Heck, if I had to pick a place to hide in or live out an economic disaster, or some other type of scenario Id come here.
I hiked up to the top of the cliffs and took a few pics before I began the Hike back to my car, I really liked this canyon and was a little sad that my day hike had ended.
Making a promise to myself to return soon, i chucked my pack on the back seat and fired up the blazer then headed for home.
Here are a few pics.