In The Desert
Content including photographs are Copyright © 2011 - Present - Don & Linda Gilmore
Court House Rock
This daytrip in the desert is located in the Eagletail Mts. See the map below. We heard about this area and the multitude of petroglyphs near Indian Springs from George Campbell an old miner, prospector, that used to drive to the petroglyps in a jeep, today you have to hike into the area. It is a Wilderness area on BLM property.
The photo above is Court House Rock, the most prominent mountain in the area. Taken from the north side on Gas Line Road. The photo to the left is the back side of the mountain. This is a pretty remote area and the hike is about 2 miles but is fairly easy. Take a lot of water with you. You'll need a topo map to find the Indian Springs water hole that is maintained by the Arizona Game & Fish Dept.
As you can see this trail is pretty flat and there is nothing strenuous about the hike. You will have to park and leave your vehicle out at the Eagletail Wilderness sign shown above.
Along the way if you look at the mountains to the west you'll see many caves that would probably be worth investigating. They don't appear to have been disturbed much as there are no trails in to them.
You'll have to start this trip from Gas Line Road, owned by the El Paso Natural Gas Co. They maintain the road to service the pumps along the buried gas line. This road parellels Interstate 10 from Quartzsite to Phoenix, on the south side of the Interstate The wash to the right is the first wash you have to hike up to get to Indian Springs. The trail in most places looks like an old Jeep trail.
This is the area your looking for. The petroglyphs are in the rocks and cliff face shown here. This is looking north and to the south is the Indian Springs water hole. The water hole is fenced in to keep the water safe for wildlife. There is another water source nearby, hidden under a big flat rock in the wash. We've never been able to find it, although we were assured by George Campbell that it does exist.
An Indian grinding rock hole in the bedrock near where we were standing when we took the photo above. There are several of these holes in this area. This was a popular spot for the Indians as signs can be found all through the area.
Looking down from up next to the cliff face where the petroglyphs are, you can see the two major washes that feed into a narrower canyon below. In the narrow canyon below is where the running stream is suppose to be -- hidden under a big flat rock.
Here are 5 photos of some of the many petroglyphs found up near and on the cliff face. A lot of the cliff face has fallen away and now the petroglyphs are laying down just below the cliff. There are still a lot of drawings on the cliff itself. As you can see there is quite a variation of drawing styles involved here, making us think that this was an Indian message board for a long time, maybe hundreds of years. I'm sure that they stopped in this area because of the springs and availability of water and game.
If you like petroglyphs then this is really worth the hike in to see them. Don't forget to look for the running underground stream. George said he never would have found it if he hadn't sat on the rock while eating lunch. He heard the water running underneath him.
Have fun --------
The petroglyphs are located in the lower left hand corner of the map below, mouse over it......