Indian Fort

4.5/5 (5 reviews)
Black Canyon City, Arizona ( County)
Last Updated: 01/07/2023

Trail Information


The Hohokam flourished in southern Arizona from approximately 200 to 1500 AD. They were known for their complex system of irrigation ditches along the Gila and Salt Rivers, which allowed them to grow corn, beans, and squash as well as cotton. While largely living in the valleys near the Salt and Gila Rivers, their villages extended into the surrounding mesas, hills, and mountains. Between present-day Gila Bend, Phoenix, and Prescott, the Hohokam also constructed what appear to be fortifications on high points. Each walled fort had a direct line of sight with at least one other fort. When archeologists mapped the known forts, a network appeared. The purpose of the forts remains a mystery. Were they for defense? Communication? Ceremonial? All of the above? This short loop takes you to a hilltop Hohokam ruin in this complex network. A brief steep footpath leads you up the hill to the rock-rimmed fort. Indian Fort trail is located in the Table Mesa Recreation Area, a BLM-operated OHV complex that offers everything from easy scenic drives to hardcore rock crawling. Enjoy a short easy drive back into the history of this rugged landscape along the Indian Fort trail. If you hike to the top, see if you can spot any other hilltop fortifications nearby. Take time to ponder the purpose the Hohokam had for these unique structures. Please respect all archeological sites, so future generations have the same opportunity to ponder the past.

Trail Difficulty and Assessment

Trail Navigation

Trail Reviews

4.5/5 (5)
Rated 5/5
Visited: 04/03/2021

We always take out of towners to the Indian Fort and then on to Tip Top Mine/Town which isn't listed. That's ok, because like the town of Gillett it now appears that the land and the towns Ruins are now privately owned. there is many signs reading private property but also a locked gate. There's is no access to the town so don't waste your time driving down to cattle corral. Back to the the Indian Fort, the trail is clearly marked there's really nothing to report, oh yeah we got there before anybody else by the time we climbed up to the top, at least 20 rzrs showed up from a commercial outfit. 20 rzrs 2 seats 40 people. They are over running the trails. Enough of the rant. The Indian Fort trail in my opinion is a easy trail narrow in spots, and with the off camber don't run it in the rain. Ill get some pictures of the signs posted.
Official Crew
Rated 5/5
Visited: 02/26/2021

Southwestern archeology never ceases to inspire me. This is one of many similar Hohokam sites in Arizona and perhaps the easiest one to get to.
Rated 4/5
Visited: 05/23/2020

Great little trail with awesome views and great historical value
Rated 4/5
Visited: 05/26/2019

A good little run. The view is awesome. If you have any issues with mobility you may not make up to the actual fort. There’s was nothing hard about this trail. It’s be a good idea to have the maps that include the BLM roads in the area.
Visited: 10/14/2017

For our last spot of the day, our group decided to visit the Indian Fort. This is not a tough trail at all and it is very short. In fact, you only need 4 Lo in one spot. The view from the Indian Fort is awesome. Please do not disturb anything when you visit the Indian Fort. Looking at the fort and imagining the effort taken to stack these rocks is amazing.

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