Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Square Towers between Woods and Yellow Jacket Canyons

On the east side of the Woods Canyon East Rim Road there is an alcove Ancestral Pueblo ruins site below the rim. From the cliffs above the alcoves, I thought I could see some wall structures hidden by the forest on a ridge in the area between Wood Canyon and Yellowjacket Canyon about 1 mile away.

The Woods Canyon East Rim Road is a west turn 0.2 miles past the carbon dioxide gas plant that is at the junction of Roads U and 14, west of the community of Yellow Jacket in southwest Colorado. I started hiking 1.1 miles down this road at a carbon dioxide well site.

Along the road here, to the west are good views of the Woods Canyon Pueblo site. From this starting point, the hiking is generally south along canyon rims with a crossing of one small drainage. There isn’t a trail to follow here. From previous observation from the cliffs above the alcoves, I had a good bearing on the hill I was heading for and used a compass to stay on course in the forest when there wasn’t good visibility.

The site sits on a narrow ridge with good views north and south, but isn’t visible from the east approach until you are 10 feet from it. It appears to be two side by side square towers with some south facing rooms below the towers.
This site has a good line of site view to the alcove sites. It is also visible with binoculars from the road that runs along the north and west rim of Yellowjacket Canyon.

There is more standing wall here than is usually visible at these remote sites. The bricks seem to be cut very square and fitted together well.

This doesn’t appear to be a village where many people could live. I didn’t see any kivas or other structures besides the towers and the rooms below. It is positioned with great visibility. It is in the middle between sites along Woods Canyon and others closer to Yellowjacket Canyon.

There is a little more room on the ridge top to continue west to views toward Yellowjacket Canyon and then view the ruins site from a different angle.

It took me 1:00 hour to arrive at this site and I lingered in the area for 1:10 hours. My return hike took 1:20 hours for a total hike of 3:30 hours. I carried and drank 2 liters of water on a 56 F degree late November day. There might be some minor sites to keep an eye out for in the small canyon drainage that is along the way.


1 comment:

  1. Fantastic site, great photos. Ever thought about GPS maps of your routes? It would be a great addition to your site as I am finding out that Colorado is not one for good signage.

    Thank you for the tips!