For our last day in Cedar Mesa we opted for some shorter hikes across a few different sites. We were still fairly worn out from our Butler Wash excursion and needed a sort-of down day. We actually parked overnight at the parking lot for the kiva near south fork Mule Canyon. There were a few others there and nobody bothered us.
Our first trip was to visit the House on Fire, an easily accessible ruin in the south fork of Mule Canyon. Our parking spot was actually very close to the ruin, but rather than climb down the canyon edge we drove a bit east to the access road to the easier entry point. The picture you see is the obligatory one: taken late morning as you get reflected light from the nearby sandstone onto the ruin, combined with the beautiful lines above the ruin.
We enjoyed hiking up a bit further into the canyon and searching the north (south-facing) side looking for some more ruins which we did find. Just climbing and scrambling along the slick rock off trail is fun.
Next we drove a very short distance to the gated entry to visit Mule Canyon proper and the Mule Canyon Towers. The tower ruin was fun to look at and reminded us of several we saw in the four corners area two years ago, but what we really wanted to do was drop into the canyon to visit the ruins just across from us. Another day, another trip.
Our last stop was to the developed area with another Butler Wash ruin, this one from an overlook across the canyon. It is extensive and we had the same feeling here: we want to drop in the canyon to visit the ruin proper. Good to know we have a reason to come back.
That wrapped up our Cedar Mesa visit. It was a nice change to spend time around the perimeter of the mesa proper. We will be back someday.