Through the steep and dense trail brush, the cliff ruin of Devil’s Chasm suddenly becomes fully visible, above. As the last moments of sun disappear on the other side of Aztec Peak, the final bits of direct light begin to fall away producing this nice late afternoon shadow texture on the exterior walls of the outpost.
This is the Salado Indian cliff-ruin known as “Devil’s Chasm”, found within the Sierra Ancha Wilderness Area of The Tonto National Forest, Arizona. This is one of many obscurely known and extremely difficult to visit cliff ruins in the wilderness area, which accounts for a good deal of its preservation. Devil’s Chasm, shows carbon dating ranging from about 1275A.D. to about 1310A.D. when it seems to have been abandoned and its occupants moved North to the next canyons, however after 1350A.D. no further clues exist to this culture’s demise in the area...no clues...no trace.
Cliff dwellings are fragile and irreplaceable. When visiting one, please do not climb on walls or roofs or cause any other form of injury or disturbance, including removal of cultural artifacts found there. Violators are subject to arrest, fine, and/or imprisonment. Enjoy but do not destroy your cultural heritage.
© 2016 John Morey Photography