Walnut Canyon, AZ.: Pt.2

A second set of images from Walnut Canyon, AZ. One of the many curious things that caught my attention in the canyon were the large, stone blocks, as seen in two of these images.Nature usually doesn’t do right angles or very flat surfaces.The block-like stones just seemed like an anomaly, to me. Also, I found it interesting that the living spaces you see, carved out of the rock, would seem to be a place where soot from fires would be visible. One possibility for the lack of soot is that this canyon was used seasonally ( in the warmer months) to escape the desert heat. Still, you would think fire would be needed for cooking…..so? Just seems curious to me. To do all of this work to set up a major dwelling area, on the canyon cliffs, took a lot of planning, labor and seemingly a cooperative effort.

For me, Walnut Canyon is fascinating and deserves a lot more investigation. Unfortunately , once areas like this come under the purview of the National Park Service, exploratory efforts are nearly impossible to initiate. The same goes for the Grand Canyon; there is an area of the ‘Park’ that is off limits to people. This same area is also a no-fly zone, where all air traffic is banned. Although I think the National Park Service does a great service to keep areas safe and keep up trails,  it also allows them to control where people go and what they see. If there are discoveries to be made, which I think there are, that can only be done outside of the NPS and under the distinct possibility of arrest/prosecution.

Native Americans,, who have lived in this area for millennia, have quite an interesting history of the canyon to tell that seems to contradict contemporary thought. Here is a link to an Arizona Republic article that is a worthwhile read.

Walnut Canyon, AZ. : Pt. 1

Thought I would do a couple of posts on Walnut Canyon in Arizona. The National Park Service ‘runs’ the park. To this date, no one has determined who the original inhabitants of the canyon were. As you descend the canyon there are many cliff side ‘dwellings’. The public has access to some of them, on the trail. There are many more dwellings along the canyon walls that there is no access.

Building livable areas in a canyon is a lot of work; I can only think that at some point in the past the people who developed this site, had the resources and know-how to survive in this rocky terrain. Hiking the canyon trail was work, so living their and literally carving out an existence is hard to fathom. Unlike Pueblo Cliff dwellings, you descend into the space where at this time, there is no arable land. The river that runs through the canyon floor now is not much more than a trickle, but in centuries past it might have been a roaring source of water and game. The desert area above the canyon might have been part of a more moderate climate which would supply additional game and perhaps growing opportunities. All speculation at this point. I, however, think this site is very ancient and it presents some interesting relics that spark speculation, which you will see in my next post.

All for today.

Safe travels

from the Mothership

docked in Seattle.