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Discover San Juan County Excursions

Excursion G: Mule Canyon Towers – Bears Ears National Monument 

(Limited to 30 participants) 


The Mule Canyon Towers Tower site goes by many  names including: Cave Tower Ruins, Mule Canyon  Towers, Seven Tower Ruins, and the Five Tower Site. The  ruin features the remains of towers perched on both  sides of the head of Cave Canyon. There is no way of  knowing the exact purpose of these towers. While they  seem defensive in nature, we shouldn’t be too quick  to assign that role. They are not closely associated  with a village so there is no logical place for them to  protect. There is a water source at the head of Cave  Canyon and it is possible that this had some bearing  on the use of the towers. Maybe they were used for  communication, observation or religious reasons.  Although there is no substantial village associated  with the towers, there are a number of small sites and  structures tucked into the alcoves on both sides of the  canyon. As the canyon drops steeply from the towers,  exposed rock layers provide good building sites. With  binoculars, a few sites below the south/west rim and a  number of structures and small building groups on the  north/east side of the canyon can be spotted. (source:  BLM and Ancestral 

Hiking Information: This includes a 1-mile round-trip  hike. This short trail stays on top of the mesa with great  views of Elk Ridge and the Rocky Mountains. The hike  ends at seven ancient towers built near the edge of a  cliff. 

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