http-equiv='refresh'/> Tin TeePee/Log Cabin: Morteros

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


If you just follow behind Al and Kelly you never have to do any research on your own to find things to do. :)))  While Al and Kelly were in this area Al wrote a blog about finding Native American morteros.  I enjoyed Al’s blog and his photographs as usual.  Recently Al sent an email reminding us about the morteros which are located near where we are parked.

Today we jumped in the jeep and took a ride up into the Swisshelm Mountains and got to see an amazing sight--IMG_6243 IMG_6254 IMG_6246

IMG_6269 Morteros—the Native American answer to a mortar and pestle.  The Indians used a pestle of wood or stone and these holes (morteros) to grind seeds from the mesquite trees and other plants making food.  Some of the holes found in Arizona are thought to date back to 500AD.  Several of the morteros we found today were over a foot deep—one source I found states that the groupings of several holes on one large rock could have served as an ancient social networking site—the women (of course it was women) sat and ground the food while visiting.  Could have happened!!??

The area surrounding the morteros is rugged country, huge massive boulders, cactus and mesquite trees—it has a beauty all its own.



IMG_6259 IMG_6266 That wasp was determined to have his photo taken and I was determined to avoid him!! 

About 3pm Jeanie and Ray stopped by after working at the house nearby and we all enjoyed a little afternoon break—wine, cheese and conversation.  Life is good here in Arizona!


  1. Hey, I like the wasp picture. Looks like he is headed right for you! Interesting post and I enjoyed the photos.

  2. those are quite the mortar and pestal combinations! inventive! for the wasp?..he looks huge!!!..ewww..I would have been screaming like a girl!!

  3. Ancient social networking - I love that idea. I'm sure those women had much time for socializing.

  4. Hey, found the Morteros. Yes, that is a rugged jumble of granite rocks up there alright. Those old dried out dead Yucca stocks laying around are great for starting campfires too. We did find an old pile of stones with a wooden grave marker in that area as well. Directly over the Swiss Helm Mts on the other side a road cuts in off Rucker Canyon road to a secluded ranch in a large valley surrounded by the Swiss Helms. Wow, what I wouldn't give to have the privacy & seclusion that place has.....

  5. Neat find in the mountains. With holes that deep you can just imagine what the ground mesquite mixed with ground stone did to their teeth. :)


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