Arizona Archaeological Society




In light of recent developments on the pandemic front, Scott decided that we should probably put off getting back to work at Goat Camp at least until next month to do our part in sequestering the virus.  Scott will stay optimistic about April, but realistically he's thinking we'll be lucky if we can get back to work in May.  Hang in there everybody, try not to get too stir crazy, take care of yourselves and those around you and stay healthy - we've still got work for you to do!

As many of you have no doubt already heard or seen, we did get some damage to the site during our time off. About New Years, someone drove up the firewise road into the site while it was soaking wet and proceeded to tear it up like it was his own motocross track, leaving behind a very disturbed surface and a lot of deep ruts. Fortunately, he did not get into the excavation area, but there is still damage to the pithouse part of the site and part of the PATS trail has been obliterated. At some point we may add a bit of landscape repair to our workplan to take care of this. The Town (?) has blocked the road with boulders, to prevent this from happening again, but there is a breach in the short stretch of fence along Tyler Parkway that needs to be repaired. Not sure the Town will do that; if they don’t we will. It doesn’t look like anyone has ever tried to drive through the gap (the wire looks like it was cut years ago), but you never know. The fences are still secure on the west, north, and east sides.

This Spring our focus will be on Room 8, but we will also be taking a deeper look into Room 28, opening up/completing Room 30, and wall trenching the exterior of the north, east, and south sides of the Room 8, 28-30 complex. And we will be continuing our stabilization work and doing some more backfilling of the rooms that have been completed. Maybe we’ll even open up one of our roasting pits. We also have some additional mapping to do – as Scott was inspecting the damage done by the fourwheeler, he found another room or so that will need to be added to the site map!

We may add more lab sessions or tack weekdays onto them depending on need and, as always, the whole schedule is tentative and subject to weather. As always, Scott will confirm each session a week or so ahead and will appreciate y’all letting him know if you’ll be attending.

As per our custom, Saturday sessions will run from 0900 to 1500 and Sunday sessions from 0900 to 1400. Lab days will run 1000-1500.

Drop Scott a line if you have any questions or you’re new to the crew and need directions, etc.

One last thing. Friends of the Tonto recently signed an Adopt-a-Site agreement with the Forest to take care of Shoofly Village Ruin interpretive site on Houston Mesa. If you like cutting and hauling brush and whacking weeds and such and getting involved in taking acre of some public archaeology, we can sure use the help. We have a few details to work out this week, but Scott hopes to come up with a work schedule soon (probably for March) and we’re hoping to put on an Open House with tours like we do at Sears-Kay Ruin, probably in April. Watch this space!

Scott Wood, retired Tonto archaeologist and Rim Country Adviser, leads the excavations at Goat Camp.  Participants must be members of AAS.  Scott's contact information is on the Rim Country page near the bottom.

Excavation Dates:                          Lab Sessions:

April 18 and 19                              June 27 and 28

May 16, 17, 30, and 31                  July 11 and 12

June 13 and 14

Goat Camp Ruin is located in Payson and was occupied from about 750 to 1280 AD.  The site was originally a Hohokam colony that continued to be occupied through the Classic Period.  The Classic Period occupation is called "Payson Tradition" or "Northern Salado".  After several changes in ownership and extensive pot-hunting, the city of Payson took over ownership of the site. The Rim Country Chapter, with Scott Wood’s assistance, proposed creating an archaeological interpretive site as well as a hiking trail for this 6-acre parcel of land, similar to that of nearby Shoofly Ruin. Scott has led groups of volunteers each spring and fall for the past few years excavating and interpreting areas within the overall complex. The goal is not rebuilding or total excavation, but knowledge and public education through an interpretive package.

Ceramic Checklist                                 First Season Report

Site Map                                                Second Season Report

Master Development Plan             Third Season Report 

Excavation and Stabilization Plan       Fourth Season Report

Goat Camp 2018 Fall Plan           Fifth Season Report   

Goat Camp 2019 Spring Plan                Sixth Season Report

Goat Camp 2020 Spring Plan                Seventh Season Report


         SCREENING                                                                            CLEANING ARTIFACTS


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