Monday, August 5, 2002
Backpacking in the Mimbres Mountains
Team South continues backpacking through the Gila National Forest today, climbing the peaks and valleys of the Mimbres Mountains. These mountains are named for some of the earliest known inhabitants of southwestern New Mexico-- relatives of the better-known Anasazi of the Four Corners.
The Mimbres lived in cliff dwellings, made exquisite figurative pottery, and traded with an extensive network of people in the southwest, from the Casas Grandes people in Mexico to the Hohokam people of Arizona, and up to the Puebloans of northern New Mexico. By around 1400 AD, they had left the area, presumably in search of greener pastures. Various bands of Apaches moved into these mountains, and inhabited the area unchallenged for nearly 500 years. Today, this area is relatively inhabited, and most of the land is in the public domain.