About Agua Fria
Agua Fria is a newcomer to the National Park System, being designated as a monument on January 11, 2000. It covers 71,000 acres of the foothills of the Mogollon Rim in north-central Arizona. The topography is rugged and includes the deep Agua Fria river canyon and the Perry and Black Mesas. Prickly pear, catclaw and a scattering of mesquite form a sparse covering on the hills, along with patches of rocky, sandy soil and small boulders.
Created to preserve an unusual collection of native American ruins dating from 1250 to 1450 AD, the monument is said to contain 450 sites which once housed several thousand people. None of the ruins can be seen online in this virtual tour at present.
The monument is very obscure and difficult to find in spite of Interstate 17 passing right along its border. There are probably a number of roads leading in, some of which may be not be marked clearly. Bloody Basin Road appeared to be the main entrance. The monument is relatively unknown with minimal visitation.