Archaeological Conservancy Tours

 Available September 1 through May 31  -- Mondays through Fridays

Most visitors to the area are familiar with Oak Creek Canyon that runs between the cities of Flagstaff and Sedona.  But Oak Creek continues beyond Sedona for about 10 miles until it reaches the Verde River. These sites are private archaeological preserves of the Archaeological Conservancy.

 The first stop will be the Ottens Pueblo. Edgar Mearns, a US Army surgeon and naturalist stationed at Camp Verde from 1884 to 1888, visited Ottens Pueblo (often referred to as Sugarloaf Ruin) during his extensive study of ancient ruins of the Verde Valley. A survey conducted in 1939 noted that it contained 55 to 65 rooms and that its central plaza was 60 x 75 ft (18.3 x 22.9 m) in size. 

We will also visit a nearby pit house and smaller single-story dwelling before climbing up to the Ottens Pueblo. There is a rather steep climb up to the mesa top to reach the pueblo. Good hiking boots are mandatory. We can provide hiking poles if desired.

The second stop will be the Atkeson Pueblo at the confluence of Oak Creek and the Verde River. This site has the largest free-standing pueblo wall in the Verde Valley. The elevated location of the pueblo would have provided an excellent view of people travelling up and down Oak Creek. Atkeson Pueblo is one of a number of prehistoric sites located in regularly-spaced intervals of around 2 miles (3.2 km) along the upper and middle Verde River and its tributaries.  

  • START: 8:30 am in the Archaeology Center for an overview, leaving the Center promptly at 9:00. We can pick up at your hotel/location for groups of four or more.
  • LENGTH: 3 hours
  • PRICE:  $95 adults / $85 children 12+ includes transportation from the Center and water. Members and their guests receive a 15% discount.
  • GROUP SIZE: We can schedule a field seminar with a minimum of 2 participants and maximum of 10. 
  • DIFFICULTY: The hikes to Ottens Pueblo and the Atkeson Pueblo are moderately difficult and involves a steep elevation change, with uneven terrain. As a result, we cannot accommodate children under 12. 

The Archaeological Conservancy requires the completion of an Assumption of Risk form for all participants. You can download the form HERE.

Go to the Details page for additional information, such as required clothing and supplies.