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Pueblo la Plata (Silver Creek Ruins)

Pottery shards
Native american ruins at Pueblo la Plata
Native american ruins at Pueblo la plata
Wall at Pueblo la plata
map: Pueblo la plata ruins
Elevation plot: pueblo la plata ruins


How to Get There
This hike is located near Cordes Junction, AZ.

From the Phoenix area, take I-17 North to the Bloody Basin exit (#259). This road (FR269) is a good graded dirt road. Bloody Basin road crosses the Agua Fria river, but the river is either low or dry most of the year and the crossing is paved. Drive 8.7 miles along this road and make a left at the signed junction for route 9023. You'll pass double tank on your left (a couple of large cow dirt water ponds) and after 0.5 miles, you'll stay left at the signed 9023 junction. At this point, the BLM calls this road a 'route'. You'll probably need a high clearance vehicle to make it to the parking area, which you'll reach after another 0.7 miles of driving. You can also park and walk it if you like. There's a trail register here, with information about the ruins.
Phoenix Area and Central Arizona

Hike details

2.00 [Miles] Total
Hike Distance- Details
2.0 miles round trip.
1.50 [Hours]
It took us an hour and a half hours with a 15 minute stop for lunch.
Elevation Change
100 Total gain/loss [Feet]
Elevation Details
about 100 ft slow decent
Hike Trail Type
Out and Back


Best Season
  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December
Date Hike completed
January 02, 2010


Solitude Details
This is a popular stop for the four wheeling set, so don't expect much solitude here.


Difficulty Rating
difficulty detail
The hike is too short for my taste, but the ruins are interesting enough. This is an Easy hike.


Be Aware of
Route Finding

Hike to the ruins at Pueblo la Plata, also known as the Silver Creek Ruins in Arizona.

Although the ruins here are not nearly as impressive as those of Cooper Forks or Pueblo Canyon, the hike is certainly much easier. These ruins still have much to interest the curious, especially if you enjoy hunting for pottery shards.

From the parking area, head through the gate and follow the old dirt road towards the mound in the distance. It's only about 0.5 miles flat walking to the main ruins. It is estimated there were between 120 to 160 rooms at this site during it's occupation seven hundred years ago. The walls of the rooms have seen better days, but much of the original stonework is still holding up in places. It is also the easiest place I've found to discover pottery shards... they're everywhere. So careful where you step!

When you've finished exploring the main ruins, turn West and start a flat cross country walk to "the Fort" (no defined trail). After about a half mile (see the map) you'll reach the obvious wall between the two canyons out on a point. The route finding isn't too difficult, as both sides are bordered by the canyons. The wall is impressive, as it is clearly obvious they spent a great deal of effort building it.  This is a good spot for lunch, as you can enjoy the ruins as well as the views.

When you're ready, return the way you came.


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