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Cedar Mesa
  Grand Gulch
     Kane Gulch
         Junction Ruin
         Turkey Pen Ruin
     Toadie Canyon
     Sheiks Canyon
   Mule Canyon
     Cave Canyon Towers
     Mule Canyon Ruin
     N.Fork Mule
     S.Fork Mule
   Lime Canyon
   Road Canyon
     7 Kiva Ruin
     N. Fork Road
   Slickhorn Canyon
   John's Canyon
   Arch Canyon
   Walnut Knob

Comb Ridge
  Procession Panel
  Wolfman Panel
  Upper Butler Wash
    Butler Wash Ruin
    Ballroom Cave
    Target Ruin

Canyon of the Ancients
  Lowry Pueblo
  Ruin Canyon
  Montezuma Creek

San Juan River
  16 Room House
  Sand Island Panel

Canyonlands N.P.
  Island In The Sky District
     Aztec Butte

Hovenweep N.M.

Other Cool Places
  Little Westwater Ruin
  Moki Dugway
  Milk Ranch Point
  Whiskers Draw
  Moki Dugway

Camping Index
Camping in Anasazi Country
Anasazi Country Campgrounds
Selecting a Campsite
Selecting a Tent Site
Selecting a Tent
Sleeping Bags & Pads
The Camp Kitchen
Water Supplies

Visiting Lime Canyon

   Lime Canyon is located in Southeastern Utah on Cedar Mesa. It starts on the Mesa top and quickly cuts into the rock layers creating a canyon that runs toward the east. Lime canyon discharges into Comb Wash. On a previous hike here we had explored Lime by approaching from the North, dropping in to hike some ledges, exploring a few Anasazi ruins, dropping to the canyon bottom and hiking out up-canyon. It was a great hike and I really loved Lime, so, I was excited to plan this hike. We would approach Lime from the South this time and walk up canyon for a couple of miles before heading to the rims to scout for ruins. We had reason to believe that there were some interesting Anasazi sites in the area and set off to see what we could find.

      We approached Lime Canyon by taking a spur road to the East from UT261. We followed the road for about a mile and a half to a junction near a small butte. We left the truck here and followed the track to the East on foot.
Lime Canyon ruin  A string of Anasazi structures were located along the length of this Lime Canyon ledge.
After a couple of miles we set off to the North hoping to strike Lime near a side canyon area that looked like it might offer access.  Sure enough, as we approach the canyon rim we find a defined watercourse that gradually deepens into a small slick rock canyon which quickly ends at a large impassable pour over. We knew we wanted to get down here if possible as there were ruins in sight on the ledge below us. After much scouting in each direction we finally find a steep difficult route down to the ledge below us. After an adventurous scramble we are on the ledge and follow it until we are right below the pour off where we pause to admire the hanging gardens that are still green and vibrant.
Continuing on,  the ledge sweeps around a small peninsula that reaches out into Lime Canyon. We are on the Southeast side of the peninsula walking North and soon reach the long string of Anasazi ruins that stretches along the ledge. Most are in poor condition but there is a good Kiva. A few corn cobs litter the ground but there are not many pottery shards to be found. This was a long ledge with quite a string of structures that was in a very scenic area. There were great views of Lime
Lime Canyon Ruin     Exploring the ruins along a ledge in Lime Canyon
Canyon as it carves its way off Cedar Mesa.

      As the route we had come down was pretty tough I decided to scout for a better path back. I worked my way to the end of the ledge where it turned the corner and joined main Lime Canyon. Heading up canyon on the ledge It quickly became obvious that, although the ledge continued for some distance, it did not provide any access to the rim of the canyon. So it was back the way we entered and we fought up the tough climb to reach the rim.

     From this point we decide to rim walk back toward the truck. After some distance we spotted a great looking set of small ruins high on the sheer canyon wall across from where we stood. We spent some time studying the cliff wall and just could not find any possible way that the ruins could be accessed. It is always amazing to see these Anasazi structures perched on inaccessible ledges high on cliff walls.

      Exploring the towers located on top of a small butte near Lime Canyon
      After arriving back at the truck we decide to explore the small knob that we are parked near. the walk up is not very difficult and on top we find the remains of several structures. This knob sits high above the surrounding Mesa and the views in all directions are spectacular. It is obvious that this would be a good look out area for the Anasazis and many of the high points on Cedar Mesa that we have explored have structures located where they can view long distances. There were several ruins that were round and looked as they might have been towers. Towers are not uncommon in this general area and it appeared that there were once several on this small butte.

      It is an easy walk back to the truck and, having hiked about 6 miles on the day, we return to our Cedar Mesa camp. This was a great hike into Lime Canyon which is a favorite of mine. Although Lime doesn't have the reputation of some other Cedar Mesa canyons, I find it to be one of my favorites..
      A string of Anasazi ruins are located on the top of this small knob that rises above Cedar Mesa near Lime Canyon. 360 degree views allowed the ancients to survey all that surrounded. It is likely that a series of these high spots were linked together into some form of distant communication.
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