Our family of 6 decided to take a quick trip out to see Pictograph Cave State Park, and while the kids were a bit unruly that day after we got them settled down they really seemed to enjoy the hike. The fee for the park was $5.00 paid at the visitors center, however I think many folks bypass the fee by just skipping the visitors center and doing the hike up to the caves. We like visitor centers and the lady inside was very informative and gave us great insight into the park as well as maps to other areas that we might be interested in checking out. We did not mind paying the $5.00 fee. The $5.00 fee also lets you into other State Parks for that day so if you are going to see some other State Parks on that day it is a good value.
There are two trails one is paved and a relatively easy hike up to one of the caves. I am not in the best of shape with a bum ankle and so decided to stick to the paved trail. The walk was not too strenuous however there was a bit of an incline. There are plenty of places to stop along the way up, some with benches to rest on and take in the scenery and read the informative plaques about the site and local flora and fauna (plants and wildlife). Along the way up I took in the heavenly scent of wild roses and sage brush. I love plants and enjoyed the hike very much. Once we got to the cave at the top of the trail I was a bit disappointed to see that due to natural erosion and time most of the prehistoric cave drawings were faded and hardly viewable anymore. You really had to look hard for them and the ones that were still viewable were much later drawings (after guns were introduced to the native Americans) however it was still interesting to see. I headed back down the trail while my husband and 4 children (13 to 5) took the unpaved trail to visit the other cave(s). They enjoyed the hike and the caves.
This was a pleasant excursion for some fresh air and a little hike. I think we were there for about 2 hours. The drive to the caves was nice as well.
See the caves before the pictographs are gone. While the State Park system has taken measures to prevent erosion and damage as much as possible they are fading and won't be around forever.
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