Tsu'vo Loop Trail

Rating: 
Round Trip Distance: 0.5 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation: 4840 - 4896 feet
Cellphone: 2-4 bars
Usage: Hiking - Dogs (on leash)
Time: 30 mins.
Facilities: Flush toilets at Visitor Center
Trailhead: Tsu'Vo
Fee: $7/vehicle
Attractions: petroglyphs
 


View Tsu'Vo in a larger map

The Tsu'vo trail is located in the Homolovi State Park near Winslow, Arizona. Tsu'vo is the Hopi phrase that means 'path of the rattlesnake'. A warning sign at the trailhead makes mention of venomous reptiles and insects. At the time of the visit for this post it was a chilly winter day with temperatures in the low 40's F so there wasn't much of anything moving around other than a few people.


The trailhead is located along the road between the Visitor Center and the Homolovi II ruin.


The Tsu'vo trail is a self guided interpretive trail with markers that point out objects of interest such as a boulder with smooth impressions that was once used as a metate or place to grind grains into flour. Be sure to pick up a brochure at the Visitor Center.


The climbs around the rocks a bit so it can pass a few more interesting petroglyphs and such.



The rock art at Tsu'vo is very old and faded. It has been determined that this area of the country has been continually inhabited since around 6000 B.C. That is not to say that these petroglyphs are that old but some of them were etched deep into the rock and they show a considerable amount of weathering.


Potsherds have to be one of the signature attractions for Homolovi State Park.


The Tsu'vo trail also has a few chips of petrified wood that might catch your attention.


Usually faded petroglyphs can be traced on the computer to enhance them but even after blowing these up they are just too far gone for me anyway.


From the last area of petroglyphs the trail loops around to the base of the opposite hill and continues back to the parking area.


Looking off to the west at the snow capped San Francisco Peaks and knowing of other settlements in that area like Walnut Canyon, Wupatki and the Eldon Pueblo makes one wonder if they ever used something like smoke signals to communicate important messages or whether they had runners that traveled between the sites.


While the petroglyphs along the Tsu'vo trail may be faded it is still interesting to imagine people moving about the area grinding corn, sharpening points or engaging in other activities. Perhaps they chose this site because of the elevated vantage points of the hills from which they could scan the countryside in all directions. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.