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Thursday, April 11, 2019

Getting To Ruins Along San Juan River

We could see that there were ruins on the San Juan River from the AllTrails App.  We tried twice to drive down the lower Comb Wash Road to get to them, but were thwarted both times by the first river crossing.  

The river banks were steep and there was no way we wanted to get stuck in the river.  Not to mention that there are a total of 6 river crossings to get to the San Juan River to see the ruins.

We also saw the above hike down the Butler Wash on AllTrails App, and decided we could hike it once we drove a ways to the canyon edge.  

After driving the Jeep road as far as we could, Joanne parked the Jeep we headed down the trail that turned out to be an old roadbed 

We descended down the canyon to the left headed to the San Juan River.

We worked our way down into the canyon and walked along the side of Butler Wash.

The trail looked like this and there were a few times we needed to cross Butler Wash and it was muddy and had some water, that made it challenging.

After arriving at the bank of The San Juan River we found that there was no way to follow the edgevto get to thevRuins on the river that were accessible from Comb Wash.

We headed back up stream on Butler Wash, retracing our rout we cam in on to a spot we had noticed a cave with what appeared to be a few ruins.

We climbed up inside to check them out.  There were only a few dwellings, but still a nice spot to see.

This is the first animal skull we have seen at a ruin, not knowing it’s age and relation to the ruins, though.

Many of the other ruinscwe havevfound are more extensive.

We could only find a few petroglyphs too.

Above are the common stone rubbings thoughtbto be used for grinding.

What I kikenist about this hike and ruins is the remoteness and the few signs of others coming here.

The picture above is what the natives would have seen from their cave home looking toward The San Juan River.

There a number of ruins without a good water source and this one has plenty of water and The San Juan River has fish where the Butler and Comb washes don’t appear to sustain fishing.

Here are my hike stats.

It was another good hike and ruin find to add to our list of places discovered.



  1. Thanks for sharing your travels. I'm now learning about new places from you. Wonderful! Have you been to Little Finland yet? I finally got there this springs, and will be sharing a video in the next week or two. Happy Trails!

    1. Hi,

      I haven’t been to Little Finland.

      Looking forward to your post. So many places - so little time

      Best wishes