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Double Stack Ruin

Double Stack Ruin gets its name from the lower and higher sets of ruins set in a large alcove. A short easy-to-follow trail takes you to a canyon where a single ruin is located on an inaccessible ledge and a large set of multiple ruins is easy to explore. 

The lower ruins are quite interesting, with lots of standing walls and some logs used as structure still remaining. There are metates for corn grinding to see as well as an interesting mud spiral and many handprints of different colors on the back wall of the alcove. 


Dogs okay

Getting there

The turn-off on Lower Butler Wash Road is at ( 37.315768, -109.627956 ), 3.9 miles from the south entrance to Lower Butler wash road from Highway 163


1.5 miles total out and back

Parking ( 37.316303, -109.628718 )

Sandy area


Turn off of the Lower Butler Wash Road at the fork take the right and begin hiking from there. Look for an unmarked trail that drops down into the first of three consecutive washes.

On the trail to Double Stack ruins

Follow the well-defined Sandy trail and you’ll hit slick Rock. Watch for Rock Cairns taking you northwest or bearing right over the slick rock.

Following the rock cairns over the slickrock

At the end of the slickrock you come to the mouth of the canyon and soon come to a reconstructed Navajo wikiup.

Blooming yucca in the desertThe first wikiup on the trail

The well-defined trail follows the wash of the canyon. In about 10 minutes there’s another wiki up next to the trail on the right-hand side.

The second wikiup on the trail

Just after the second wikiup you will descend a short sandy chute, look up to see a huge alcove overhang to your right with lots of striped water stains running down it. The upper ruin is in the ledge about halfway up in this alcove on your right-hand side. 
The alcove of Double Stack Ruin in Bears Ears Utah
The canyon forks here do not follow the trails to the left heading up uphill that leads to the left-hand fork of the canyon, many people have missed the correct trail which runs to the right closer to the alcove, and have created a misleading social trail that eventually gets fainter and peters out as a dead end and you have to double back to this spot and start again.
Head to the right, and you will spot the correct trail heading uphill through the cactus garden to the second ruin behind a large fence.
Looking over the multi-walls of the Double Stack Ruin
There is actually quite a bit to see, you will find metates near the back wall on the left that were used for grinding corn and seeds.
Interesting rocks on display
The ruins themselves are very interesting to study the mud mortar construction. There is a good assortment of painted hands pictographs in red, yellow, and white, as well as numerous pottery shards and flakes of chert leftover from arrowhead and tool making. Three quarter view of Standing wall in Double Stack Ruins

Multi-colored hand prints on the back wall

mud Indian Rock Art on back wall

Pottery sherds and chert

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