Went on a hike with a group from work. Me and another staff took the wrong trail and ended up seeing these amazing petroglyphs, ruins and pottery. Glad we got lost LOL. So at the sign about three miles in… go to the right. If you go to the left you will end up at a really awesome swimming hole called “The Crack.”
We recently had the opportunity to stay at the Rock Art Ranch in Joseph City near Winslow Arizona. Brantly Barid and family were amazingly loving and humble hosts. I didn’t want to leave! So many awesome things to see… the museum, the kivas and pit houses, Chevelon canyon with some of the most amazing petroglyphs I have ever seen, old hogans, pottery, arrowheads, mind blowing sunsets and an abundance of wildlife. This is a history lovers paradise! Such a peaceful place to be. Enjoy…
Contact Info: 928.288.3260 Facebook TripAdvisor
This magical photograph was taken down inside the Kiva here at Mesa Verde National Park. It is a panorama of 8 images. TI wanted to convey a sense of Spiritual awareness with the Ancestral Puebloans ( Anasazi ). The shadows and light coming down from the world above invokes a sense of timelessness. One almost expects to see the Elders gathered here. This photograph was taken in late August of 2012, ( Spruce Tree House ).
A kiva is a room used by modern Puebloans for religious rituals, many of them associated with the kachina belief system. Among the modern Hopi and most other Pueblo peoples, kivas are square-walled and underground, and are used for spiritual ceremonies.
Similar subterranean rooms are found among ruins in the American southwest, indicating ritual or cultural use by the ancient peoples of the region including the Ancient Pueblo Peoples, the Mogollon and the Hohokam. Those used by the ancient Pueblos of the Pueblo I Era and following, designated by the Pecos Classification system developed by archaeologists, were usually round, and generally believed to have been used for religious and other communal purposes.
When designating an ancient room as a kiva, archaeologists make assumptions about the room’s original functions and how those functions may be similar to or differ from kivas used in modern practice. The kachina belief system appears to have emerged in the Southwest at approximately AD 1250, while kiva-like structures occurred much earlier. This suggests that the room’s older functions may have been changed or adapted to suit the new religious practice.
As cultural changes occurred, particularly during the Pueblo III period between 1150 and 1300, kivas continued to have a prominent place in the community. However, some kivas were built above ground. Kiva architecture became more elaborate, with tower kivas and great kivas incorporating specialized floor features. For example, kivas found in Mesa Verde were generally keyhole-shaped. In most larger communities, it was normal to find one kiva for each five or six rooms used as residences. Kiva destruction, primarily by burning, has been seen as a strong archaeological indicator of conflict and warfare among people of the Southwest during this period.
Fifteen top rooms encircle the central chamber of the vast Great Kiva at Aztec Ruins National Monument. The room’s “…purpose is unclear…. Each had an exterior doorway to the plaza…. Four massive pillars of alternating masonry and horizontal poles held up the ceiling beams, which in turn supported an estimated ninety-five-ton roof. Each pillar rested on four shaped stone disks, weighing about 355 pounds apiece. These discs are of limestone, which came from mountains at least forty miles away.” (A Trail Guide to Aztec Ruins, 4th printing:WNPA, 2004).
After 1325 or 1350, except in the Hopi and Pueblo region, the ratio changed from 60 to 90 rooms for each kiva. This may indicate a religious or organizational change within the society, perhaps affecting the status and number of clans among the Pueblo people. The use of the kiva was for men and boys only.
An easy hike along the bottom of Sterling Canyon. The drainage is dry most of the year. Shade is available, but it would be wise to carry some water in the warm months.
The signed trailhead is on the east side of the parking area. The well maintained trail almost immediately enters Wilderness and climbs gradually in the shade of Arizona cypress beside a dry stream bed on the floor of Sterling Canyon. There are occasional views of red rock formations to the left and of the sheer walls of Lost Wilson Mountain on the right. After 0.75 miles, the trail enters stands of ponderosa pine and oak which show the scars from the 1996 “Arch” fire. Nearing the 1.75 mile point, there is a marked fork. Sterling Pass Trail branches off to the right. Keep left and continue 100 yards where the trail ends at a large red rock outcrop. There are nice views of the canyon, mountains and of Vultee Arch, about 0.25 miles the north.
The trail dead ends at a bronze plaque placed in memoriam of Gerard and Sylvia Vultee who lost their lives in an aircraft crash on January 29, 1938. The actual crash site is more than a mile north and at a much higher elevation, on East Picket Mesa. On the north side of the canyon across from the plaque is the sandstone arch named for Vultee, an early aircraft designer from California. Just before the plaque site there is a junction with the Sterling Pass Trail which continues over into Oak Creek Canyon.
My adventure today… November 1 2015
The Palatki Heritage Site — in the Hopi language Palatki means ‘red house’– it is an archaeological site and park located in the Coconino National Forest, near Sedona, in Arizona.
The Honanki Heritage Site (meaning “bear house”) is approximately 4.5 miles north west of Polatki and is also a cliff dwelling and rock art site located in the Coconino National Forest, about 15 miles (24 km) west of Sedona, Arizona. The Sinagua people of the Ancient Pueblo Peoples, and ancestors of the Hopi people, lived here from about 1100 to 1300 CE.
Pictographs are a key feature of the site. Some of the pictographs were present before the caves were inhabited, dating to 2000 BCE. However, most of the pictographs are additions from the Sinagua peoples dating between 900 and 1300 CE.
Honanki was later inhabited by both Yavapai and Apache people. Pictographs dating between 1400 and 1875 CE can be attributed to these two groups.
Most of the time the shadow self is ignored, neglected, and misunderstood. Imagine what would happen if we could learn to love, acknowledge, and nurture it? It may create more balance, totality, and completion of old chapters, agreements, commitments, relationships, and un-finished projects. Embrace it, cry with it, love it then… we will be ready to journey forward into this new exciting chapter of our lives.
During the eclipse, I was with some friends at Canyon DeChelly. Navajo Reservation. The Navajo said they do not look at the eclipse because it will bring out their shadow side. For some people, It is hard to look at these parts of ourselves… easier to just ignore it. So I watched the whole event and saw that once I looked at the shadow, eventually the light began to come back and it seemed even brighter.
Just hiked to the top of Cathedral Rock completely barefoot. Great way to connect to the earth and feel grounded. Best medicine ever!
Shamans Cave, also known as Robbers Roost, is a very special place in Sedona that when visited, one should show great respect to land and the people that are meditating and doing ceremony there. It is believed to have been a place where the Shaman of the local tribe would have performed healing and ceremony. Also, it is said that when you meditate in the cave long enough, you can hear messages from your ancestors.
The cave is a very large room, approximately 20 feet long, 40 feet wide and 15 feet high, and open on one side. Inside, there’s a near-perfect, six-foot-wide circular window cut out of the thick rock that neatly frames the amazing view. There are two distinct sets of ruins within this rock formation. There are also several metate’s in the floor where the natives would have used to grind special herbs or corn for healing and prayer.
Will you be in Sedona on the new moon? Join us for a New Moon Spiritual Journey Drumming Meditation in the tipi or out on the healing red rocks and learn sacred teachings and ancient Native ways with local Native Rebekah Two Moons. The new moon is all about releasing and setting new goals. This is a powerful ceremony for those who want to heal from the past and create a fun new future!
This is an amazingly beautiful and quiet place. The people that use to call this place home some 800 years ago, knew what they were doing! From the visitor center it is approximately a one mile hike round trip to explore these incredible ruins. There are over 300 rooms counted in this canyon. Imagine the gentle breeze blowing through the tall pines and across your face as you watch a red-tail hawk glide by. This is a must see for the northern Arizona explorer.
A Medicine Wheel is a ceremonial tool used by many spiritual people all over the world to perform rituals that honor the four directions, the sacred hoop of life, the animals, the sun and moon, Mother Earth and Father Sky, and many more aspects of the natural world.
Some Native Americans believe that “Medicine” is anything that deepens your relationship with the Creator and the Great Spirit.
The wheel is a circle divided into four directions, the east, south, west and north. Also a symbol of astrology, each person is represented somewhere within that circle depending upon their birth moth and day. That placement is associated with a special moon, power animal, totem clan, healing plant, color and mineral.
At the wheel, we say a prayer for releasing, forgiveness, gratitude and abundance. When we speak out loud to the universe we are stating our intentions and this is very powerful. I’ve seen miraculous things happen, some of which most people won’t believe or even understand.
Before entering the wheel in the East we will offer some kind of herb or prayer. This is an offering to let the spirits know the we enter with pure hearts and leave any ego or negativity outside of the sacred wheel. Cornmeal, tobacco, sage, cedar, roses and many other natural gifts are offered before going into the wheel. I’ve also seen gold glitter. Offering something before we enter the wheel is a good practice. It is said that before we enter any sacred space or even just going out into nature for a vision quest, it is good practice to offer something at the “door.” Just as some tradition will do, going to see someone at their house, they will offer a gift. It’s also common practice to smudge yourself before going into ceremony.
We’ve worked with children from the age of three and the grandmothers and grandfathers, all seem to have something to pray about.
The prayer we hold is not tied to any religion, it includes all living things such as the Creator, the Great Spirit, the animals, the four directions of the universe, our ancestors, and other things that bring us closer to nature. It’s also like stating your intentions.
The sound of the drum and rattle is healing and have been used for thousands of years. Some receive healing from the sound and some receive a vision.
The medicine wheel dates back thousands of years originating from the Lakota Sioux. Today, Medicine Wheel ceremonies are becoming more popular and can be found all over the world. As the teachings spread to different cultures, it is a bit modified, therefore not every ceremony will be alike. Each will be a bit different and that’s okay.
In the Medicine Wheel we drum and sing songs for forgiveness and gratitude. We offer our blessings and prayers to Mother Earth and Father Sky, to Grandfather Sun and Grandmother Moon, to the four directions and the animals that represent them.
Most people experience a lightness and tingling sensation. Some don’t want to leave the wheel because they feel so connected a sense of true security that they are afraid to leave the wheel and loose it. This is a feeling and an experience that can be done at any time and in any place.
The medicine wheel is a symbol of symmetry and balance. During the process of constructing the wheel you will begin to recognize what areas of your life are not in balance, and where your attention is lacking and requires focus. Continuing working with the wheel after you constructed it. Sit with your wheel in silent meditation. Allow the wheel to assist you in gaining new and different perspectives.
The medicine wheel represents the many cycles of life. The circle is representative of life’s never ending cycle (birth, death, rebirth). Each stone or spoke placement in the wheel focuses on a different aspect of living.
A personal medicine wheel can be made using fetishes such as crystals, arrowheads, seashells, feathers, animal fur/bones, and so on. Take time to reflect on each aspect of your life (self, family, relationships, life purpose, community, finances, health, etc.) as you place objects within the circle.
Over the years I’ve been assisting people from all over the world to heal past wounds, physical, emotional and spiritual. I never know what to expect with each one and they are all different. No matter what you want to do from heal physical pain to an old emotional wound, drumming in the medicine wheel can help. This can help release negativity that you have been carrying around for a long time, sometimes we don’t even realize we are carrying it.
The term “medicine wheel” was first applied to the Big Horn Medicine Wheel in Wyoming, the most southern and one of the largest in existence. That site consists of a central circle of piled rock surrounded by a circle of stone; “Rays” of stones travel out from the central core of rock and its surrounding circle. The structure looks like the wheel of a bicycle.
The Medicine Wheel can take many different forms. It can be an artwork such as artifact or painting, or it can be a physical construction on the land. Hundreds or even thousands of Medicine Wheels have been built in North America over the last several centuries.
Movement in the Medicine Wheel is typically in a clockwise, or “sun-wise” direction. This helps to align with the forces of Nature, such as gravity and the rising and setting of the Sun.
Meanings of the Four Directions
There are many different interpretations of the Medicine Wheel. Each of the Four Directions (East, South, West, and North) is typically represented by a distinctive color, such as black, red, yellow, and white, which for some stands for the human races. The Directions can also represent:
- Stages of life: birth, youth, adult, and elder.
- Seasons of the year: spring, summer, fall and winter
- Aspects of life: spiritual, emotional, intellectual, physical
- Elements of nature: fire (or sun), air, water, and earth
- Animals: Eagle, Bear, Coyote, Wolf, Buffalo and many others
- Ceremonial plants: tobacco, sweet grass, sage, cedar
The East is held to represent the mind, air, the color yellow and ‘yellow skinned peoples’, learning the groups to which people belong and the infant.
The South holds the heart, fire, the color red and ‘red skinned peoples’, and the child.
The West holds the spirit, water, the color blue or black, and ‘black-skinned peoples’ and Adulthood.
The North represents the final life stage in the wheel, being an elder and passing on knowledge to the next generation so that the wheel may start again just like the circle it takes after. It is also associated with the color white, representing the white hair of the elders and the white skinned people.
In other practices, the Northern direction corresponds to Adulthood (the White Buffalo), the South represents Childhood (the Serpent), the West represents Adolescence (the Bear) and the Eastern direction represents Death and Re-birth (Eagle). In terms of social dynamics, community building and the use of Circles in Restorative Justice work, the four quadrants of the circle correspond to Introductions.
According to Native American astrology we were all born into a particular direction of the wheel and given an animal totem and animal clan.
The concept of the medicine wheel symbolically represents a nonlinear model of human development. Each compass direction on the wheel offers lessons and gifts that support the development of a balanced individual. The idea is to remain balanced at the center of the wheel while developing equally the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects of one’s personality. The concept of the medicine wheel varies: different groups attribute different gifts to positions on the wheel. But the following offers a generalized overview of some lessons and gifts connected with the development process.
Lessons and gifts from the EAST, the place of first light, spring, and birth, include:
Warmth of the spirit
Purity, trust, and hope
Guidance and leadership
Capacity to remain in the present moment
Lessons and gifts from the SOUTH, the place of summer and youth, include:
Generosity, sensitivity, and loyalty
Testing of the physical body/self-control
Gifts of music and art
Capacity to express feelings openly in ways respectful to others
Lessons and gifts from the WEST, the place of autumn and adulthood, include:
Dreams, prayers, and meditation
Perseverance when challenged
Balance between passionate loyalty and spiritual insight
Use of personal objects, sacred of life’s meaning
Fasting, ceremony, self-knowledge, and vision
Lessons and gifts from the NORTH, the place of winter and elders, include:
Ability to complete tasks that began as a vision
Detachment from hate, jealousy, desire, anger, and fear
Ability to see the past, present, and future as interrelated
These are all different teaching from all corners of the earth, and as you can see they each slightly differ from one another. Therefore in creating and performing a Medicine Wheel Ceremony, there is no wrong way to do it. So dance, sing, shake the rattles and beat the drum as it all will help you on your personal medicine path.
So if you are coming to Sedona and want to experience this ceremony, I would highly recommend it whether it’s with us or anyone else, it is healing and will be an experience you will remember forever.
Would you like a Medicine Wheel built on your property? I would love to build a Medicine Wheel for you! Do you have a perfect location picked out on your property? Contact me to set up a time to build a wheel and hold an activating ceremony.
Just a few miles south of Sedona on 89A you will find a small ghost town on the side of Mingus mountain at 5,200 feet. Jerome, Arizona established in 1876 was once a booming copper mining town and once the fourth largest city in the Arizona Territory. The population peaked at 15,000 in the 1920’s. In 1967 Jerome was designated a National Historic District by the federal government. Today Jerome is a thriving tourist and artist community with a population of about 450. The Depression of the 1930’s slowed the mining operation and the claim went to Phelps Dodge, who holds the claim today. World War II brought increased demand for copper, but after the war, demand slowed. Dependent on the copper market, Phelps Dodge Mine closed in 1953 and the population dropped drastically. Now what is left is a small art community and ghost town rich with history.
Douglas Mansion/State Park
Make sure visit the former Douglas Mansion, designed by James “Rawhide Jimmy” Douglas is equipped with a wine cellar, billiard room, steam heat and was built from adobe bricks made on-site. Now a museum which exhibits photographs, artifacts, minerals and videos. Also a 3-D model of the underground tunnels under the town.
Gold King Mine and Ghost Town
The location of the historic Gold King Mine was originally the site of Haynes, Arizona, which in 1890, was a small suburb of the larger town of Jerome, one mile north. When the Haynes Copper Company dug a 1200-foot-deep shaft in search of copper, they were disappointed at the absence of copper, but miners hit gold instead. The site is now a museum where visitors can see continuous demonstrations of antique mining equipment and the operation of a turn-of-the-century sawmill daily. Other highlights include walks in an authentic mine shaft, animals to pet and feed, a circa 1901 blacksmith shop, and the world’s largest gas engines.
Shopping and Lunch on Main Street including wine tasting at the Jerome Winery
Allow yourself about two to three hours for eating and shopping. Jerome has several great restaurants, the Haunted Hamburger, Quinces Cafe, The Asylum Restaurant, Grapes, and the Mile High Inn & Grill. Also make sure to visit the Jerome Winery, located in the old apartment complex on Clark Street above the city park. With a large patio and expansive views, the Jerome Winery is the perfect place to pass some time away while enjoying the splendor of a fine wine. The Jerome Winery produces their own special wines as well as carrying wines from other areas of the world.
This amazing adventure begins with a beautiful drive up Oak Creek Canyon, one of the top 10 scenic drives in America. Then travel through the Ponderosa Pine Forest of Flagstaff, past the San Francisco Peaks, and on to the village of Tusayan where you can see “Hidden Secrets of the Canyon” at the Imax Theater. Then onto the South Rim of the Grand Canyon to walk along the edge for a spectacular view.
Enjoy lunch at the Bright Angel Lodge or bring your own lunch.
Then travel along the south rim and breath in the vast beauty of this amazing place. On your way back, travel along the east end of the canyon for a majestic view of the Colorado River and stop at the historical site of the Tusayan Ruin. Here we do a meditation to connect with the ancestors.
One last stop at the famous Cameron Trading Post on the Navajo Indian Reservation for fun and Authentic shopping then back to Sedona.
$220.pp/$120.pp two or more.
Travel back in time over a thousand years to the ancient land of the Hopi. A Native American tribe that is said to be the oldest living indigenous people of North America. Hopis call themselves Hopitu – ‘The Peaceful People’. Hopi land is in Northeastern Arizona and surrounded by the Navajo Nation. Small Hopi villages can be found on three different mesas, First Mesa, Second Mesa, and Third Mesa.
The Hopi believe they were first inhabitants of America. Their village of Oraibi is said to be the oldest continually occupied settlement in the United States. These small pueblo style communities all sit at the edge of large cliffs overlooking the beautiful landscape of the painted desert. Some have no running water or electricity and enjoy living this simple life just as their ancestors did hundreds, even thousands of years ago. The Hopi are also famous for their sacred dances that they have throughout the year.
Example Travel Schedule:
8am Depart Sedona and travel up scenic Oak Creek Canyon to the top of the Mogollon Rim. Then travel along historic route 66 and through the painted desert to the Hopi Mesas
10am Arrive at Hopi land and visit the ancient village of Kykotsmovi and Old Oraibi at Third Mesa, said to be the oldest inhabited village of the Hopi.
Relax and connect with the ancestors during a meditation and prayer overlooking the vista.
Then visit Hopi Prophecy Rock and learn the teachings that the ancient ones left for us. You must have a Native Hopi guide at this location.
12pm Lunch at Hopi Cultural Center restaurant on Second Mesa, enjoy an authentic Hopi meal or choose from the regular menu.
1pm Explore the museum at the Hopi Cultural Center and learn more about the history of these ancient people. Then enjoy shopping at a few of the local arts and craft shops.
Next, explore the Second Mesa village of Shongopavi then to First Mesa at Polacca and Walpi. Along the way you will see Corn Rock, to the Hopi, corn is the central bond of all life and its essence, physically, spiritually, and symbolically, pervades their existence.
3pm Depart Hopi Mesas and travel past the Hopi buttes then stop at the Painted Desert Scenic View for a final breathtaking experience of this incredible land. Return to Sedona.
- Eat breakfast before you leave.
- Bring extra money for lunch and shopping as it is respectful to buy arts and crafts for the local people for visiting their land.
- Bring plenty of water and snacks for the trip.
- Camera use is limited on this journey, and is not permitted near the villages.
Learn more about the Hopi…
One of the best books about the Hopi is “Book of the Hopi” by Frank Waters and published by Penguin Books, 1963. This book covers the origin of the Hopi, the four migrations, the origin of the clans, ceremonies etc. It is a book for anyone interested in learning more about the Hopi people.
Overnight camping or lodge trips are also available.
Beasly Flats is a historical location in Camp Verde along the Verde River. Many years ago an indigenous tribe, most likely the Hopi, lived here. There are many cave dwellings and several pithouses nearby. I actually grew up only a few miles from here where there is another similar set of caves and pithouse ruins. This area is loaded with Native American history. A beautiful place to meditate and have a picknick.
You can see this petroglyph rock on your way to Beasley Fats. I’ve heard that this rock goes about 30 feet into the earth. DOT tried to remove it once and failed so they just left it near the road and put a guardrail around it. On one side it shows San Francisco Peaks looking in the direction of the peaks! The spirals are said to be a map of where they were and where they were going. History shows that the Hopi were migrating from the far south to eventually the Hopi Mesas where the now live today.
I took this picture on a hike to Chimney Rock in Sedona. Months later I noticed the Chief’s face at the bottom of the rock. Do you see it? Also during this journey I took off on a hot day with no water thinking it would only be about an hour hike. Well it turned out to be about a three hour hike and half way up I was getting so thirsty. But since I was so close to the top I had to continue. Reaching the top, thirsty and out of breath I look over in this shady area and found a bottle of water. That day I learned to trust that all my needs would be taken care of and then later discovering this ancestor in the rock, I knew I was being watched over by my elders.
Montezumas well is located near Sedona Arizona and features well-preserved cliff-dwellings. They were built and used by the Pre-Columbian Sinagua people, northern cousins of the Hohokam, around 700 CE. It was occupied from approximately 1125-1400 CE, and occupation peaked around 1300 CE. The monument is not at all a castle, but remains to be named “Montezuma Castle”, despite it having nothing to do with Aztec Empire nor being named after any Montezuma emperors, such as Montezuma (spelled more properly “Moctezuma”). Many sites in North America are misnamed such as this site, because their discoverers were more interested in the discovery than information or understanding. Several Hopi clans trace their roots to immigrants from the Montezuma Castle/Beaver Creek area. Clan members periodically return to their former homes for religious ceremonies. When European Americans discovered them in the 1860s, they named them for the Aztec emperor (of Mexico) Montezuma, due to mistaken beliefs that the emperor had been connected to their construction. Neither part of the monument’s name is correct. The Sinaqua dwelling was abandoned 100 years before Montezuma was born and the Dwellings were not a castle. It was more like a “prehistoric high rise apartment complex”.
Montezuma Well is a natural sinkhole 368 feet wide measuring 70 feet from the water to the tops of the cliffs. Every day approximately 1.5 million gallons of warm (74°) water flows from the well. The Well is fed by three to four large underwater vents, some 56 feet below the surface. The water flows from the Well through a 300 foot long cave to emerge on the southeast side of the sinkhole mound. Here it is diverted into an ancient irrigation ditch built over 1,000 years ago by the Hohokam and Sinaguan Indians who farmed here for centuries.
Resources of information: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montezuma_Castle_National_Monument and http://www.friends-of-the-well.org