Palatki Heritage Site & The Woo Ranch Pictograph Panel

Palatki is Hopi for "Red House". Built by the Sinagua culture, the site was named by Dr. Jessie Walter Fewkes, the same archaeologist from the Smithsonian Institute who investigated many other ruins in the Southwest at the turn of the 19th Century. The Hopi themselves have no specific name for this site.
The cliff dwelling has been dated (using dendrochronology) from AD 1150-1350. Along with its sister site Honanki, it is one of the largest cliff dwelling in Red Rock Country.
Today the site is managed by the U.S. Forest Service under the Red Rock Pass Program, and is open to the public seven days a week from 9:30 am to 3:00 pm (closed Thanksgiving and Christmas). A small visitor center and bookstore (run by the Arizona Natural History Association) is located a short distance from the parking area. 
There are three short trails at Palatki, each of which is .25 miles in length. One trail takes you up to the cliff dwellings, one take you to a view of the dwellings, and the third takes you to an alcove that shelters a significant rock art panel containing images that span 4500 years. The panel includes images left by every native culture to occupy the Verde Valley.

The only way to visit Palatki is on one of the guided tours, which are limited to 10 visitors at a time. Reservations are required in advance and can be obtained by calling (928)282-3854.


Approximately 0.5 miles before reaching the parking area for Palatki you will pass the old Woo Ranch, which is located on the right side of FR 795. This was once private property, but the Forest Service has been acquiring private in-holdings like this for several decades. In 2000 they obtained the 160 acre Woo Ranch as part of a land swap with the city of Sedona.
You can park next to the gate (see DETAIL MAP below) and walk a short distance down the old dirt road to the abandoned ranch house. The rock art panel is up on the ridge to the left. Allow approximately 45 minutes to visit this site. The panel (shown in the photo above) depicts a hunting scene with desert bighorn sheep, a water symbol and hand prints.


A high clearance vehicle is not necessary to visit Palatki and Woo Ranch. There is no charge for the guided tour at Palatki, but a Red Rock Pass or America the Beautiful Interagency Pass is required to park in that parking lot. There are two way to get there. These roads are not regularly maintained by the county and there are some rough, rocky stretches that you will need to drive over slowly and carefully.

From Sedona, via SR 89A: Take SR 89A through West Sedona and continue past the last traffic light for five miles. Just past mile marker 365 turn right on FR 525. Go north for 5 miles. When FR 525 bends to the left continue straight on FR 795. In two miles this road leads directly to Palatki.

From Sedona, via Boynton Pass Road: Take SR 89A through West Sedona and turn right on Dry Creek Road. At the end of Dry Creek Road turn a left on Boynton Canyon Road and go 2 miles. At the stop sign turn left again on Boynton Pass Road. In two miles the pavement will end. Continue on the dirt road for another three miles until you reach a stop sign at the T intersection. Turn right on FR 795 and go another 2 miles to Palatki.