Next week I will be away for training. Since we had to pick up a vehicle for me to drive, Aaron and I decided to take Sam on a road trip and visit Tonto National Monument.
Sam, of course, was excited to be going. He was very impatient when we stopped for gas.
Come on, Dad, we're burning daylight!
Tonto National Monument is the home of two cliff dwellings that were occupied during the 13th, 14th and early 15th century. The Lower Cliff dwelling is open to visitors daily, and the upper cliff dwelling is only available through a guided hike. Dogs are allowed on the trail to the Lower, but not in the dwelling itself. If you would like to read more about it, click here.
Lower Cliff Dwelling
Here are Sam and I posing next to a Saguaro cactus. The trail to the Lower is nice and smooth, but ascends 300 feet over a 1/2 mile.
The view from the dwelling is spectacular! That is Roosevelt Lake in the distance.
Inside of the dwelling you can see the different rooms that make up the Lower Cliff Dwelling.
We paused for a quick photo of Sam and Aaron...
...and soon we were on our way back down the hill.
We took a quick detour down the Cactus Patch Trail to look at the trail head for the Upper Cliff Dwelling. The trail itself is locked, but you can walk down it and see the Riparian area.
See how green it is? It is hard to imagine that this is in the middle of a desert. In another couple of weeks, all of this will be covered with new leaves and flowers.
Sam had a wonderful day!