Tuesday Tidbits #10

Last week a bunch of us jumped into our 4 wheel drive Jeeps and/or trucks to explore an area of Arizona called Agua Fria National Monument which is filled with Native American Pit Ruins. Pit ruins are the ancient rock dwellings of the Hohokam Tribe. We found many dwellings but we were really in search of PETROGLYPHS!

As you can see we found them. But it took some climbing to get to them.

So what are Petroglyphs?

Petroglyphs were made by Native Americans who carved, chiseled, scraped drawings into the rocks near to where they once lived. No one really knows the exact interpretations of them. Only the individuals who made them really have the answer to their drawings. Some can be a spiritual, religious, visionary or dreams of the individual who made them.

Here you can see a cat chasing an animal… no one knows for sure what this Hohokam was trying to tell us except that he may have seen a Bobcat or Mountain Lion hunting for his dinner that day.

The Petroglyphs in Agua Fria National Monument are all of the Hohokam Style dating back to 300 AD to 1300 AD.

Here we see animals (bighorn sheep, deer, snakes) along with a people.

People hand in hand shows friendship according to Native Americans.


You can see that the Petroglyphs were found all along the canyon wall. There wasn’t a trail… so much climbing was involved. This was a beautiful example of a deer. Sweet Man is making sure I see it.

A snake? …but it also can symbolize migration. Many tribes used this symbol to show their migration from North, South, West and East until they circled back to where they called it home.

A nice example of deer and big horn sheep and how we had to climb among the rocks!

The temperatures were chilly so the threat of snakes was low. But I did find this snake skin…

We were thrilled with how many we found along the canyon wall.

These were found in the same area but are not of animals… the four direction symbol usually represents… four sacred mountains or four sacred crops or four stages of life or directions of north, south, east and west. It could even mean the four seasons.

This is not the only place in Agua Fria National Monument where we saw Petroglyphs.

The image below was not any where near Agua Fria NM. Is it a snake or the Migration symbol?

And Sweet Man and I visited Painted Rock near Dateland, AZ. This was an amazing area filled of boulders covered in Petroglyphs.

And we also saw Newspaper Rock in Canyonlands National Park in Utah.

There are millions of Petroglyphs in Arizona. The Anasazi, the Hohokam, the Navajo, the Hopi, the Apache and many more tribes… all have different styles.

We had a great day exploring!

Have you ever seen Petroglyphs? Would you like to see them out in the Wild, Wild West? I’d love to hear from you. Thanks for coming along on our adventure!

Until Next Time ~Nancy

29 thoughts on “Tuesday Tidbits #10

  1. Nancy, wow this is so interesting! I love how much you get out and explore your state. We need to do a better job of exploring Alabama, maybe we can if the hubby ever retires!

    1. Retirement is the best! We love exploring!

      By the way… Alabama is one of my states that I need. Along with Louisiana, Oregon and North Dakota.

    1. Off of I-17 It’s off of Bloody Basin Rd. East About 15 miles… There is the first Kiosk (right) at the I-17 exit. Then there is the Kiosk with restrooms. After that, at the third Kiosk …turn right. Follow that back about 3 miles. The canyon is on the left. There are Pit ruins every where.
      This area is also called Perry Mesa.

  2. I love this, Nancy! What a great outing y’all had! I have seen them visiting various places with my twinster who lives out there in Colorado!! Wonderful read!

    Blue Rock Horses Frederick County, Virginia bluerockhorses.com

  3. What fun! We love when you have to climb around to find all the petroglyphs. Very cool snake skin and so perfect. Aqua Fria NM reminds me of a newer area we have near us in Henderson, NV called Sloan Canyon with the Petroglyph Trail. The rocks are covered with hundreds of petroglyphs. I think the west is covered with them. We see the Indian art all over our trails in Nevada, as well.

    1. It truly is amazing of how much are out there. I was just thinking about you. How is everything? Did you see the snow Arizona got? Tucson got about 5 inches or so. Sunset Point on I-17 was a blizzard on New Years Eve. It very well may be that these Petroglyphs had some snow as well.

      1. We are doing well and presently in Borrego Springs for the month of Jan. We are here with friends to hike, Jeep, and play golf. The weather hasn’t been the best this year with lots of rain and clouds. But it is making for early wildflowers and should provide a great bloom in Feb for others. We did see the Tucson weather and were commenting how glad we were that we didn’t go that way this year. I am so glad to see all the rain and snow, though. The west needs many wet winters to bring the water level up. We are heading back to Boulder City for couple months and then heading out again in April for a few months.

      2. I agree! We are not complaining about the rain. The desert always needs some rain. And the water level will come up. We are hoping for another super-bloom. Although, flowers have started to show themselves.

  4. Nancy, thanks for sharing your photos and knowledge of petroglyphs. We walked through a trail and climbed around the rocks at Petroglyph National Monument. We also saw some in Utah around Capitol Reef National Park and somewhere else I can’t remember. It’s fascinating trying to imagine the ancient people who created them.

    1. It really is…

      What were they thinking. Did they have lots of time on their hands to make these creations? Who was in charge of them?

      Another thought… where we were climbing was very rough. We all had hiking boots on. They most likely were in their bare feet… or deerskin shoes of some sort.

      Thank you for visiting! 🤗

  5. My dear friend, I love petroglyphs and New Mexico has a lot of them. When we lived there, we would go exploring too and be amazed at the quality of the drawings…and the stories they told. Thank you for sharing your part of the world Nancy. I love your Tuesday Tidbits…keep them coming.

    1. Tuesday Tidbits is just a look into what’s new for me to share. It so reminds me of my Dad!

      And I am thrilled you have seen petroglyphs! They are truly fascinating!

      Happy rest of the week to you!

    1. Thank you! We feel that maybe they had a little too much time on their hands! Lol!

      Thanks for the visit! It was great hearing from you!

  6. Wow Nancy!! This was truly interesting.. your explorations are wonderful to read about. I’m just amazed how much is out there to see.. through your blog.. you’re really showing me alot!

    1. I’m so glad you are enjoying our wonderful Arizona! The best time to come out here is October for nice temps. But March, April and some of May… you get to see the desert in BLOOM! Come see us sometime! 😊

Thank You So Much... for sharing your kind words. I appreciate you taking the time out of your busy schedule to share your thoughts.