Picture Rock is supposedly a rock with Native American petroglyphs on the Arizona side of Lake Havasu near Topock Gorge at the north end of the lake. The website referenced at the bottom of this page says if you approach the rock by boat and look carefully you will likely see remnants of prehistoric petroglyphs. My google search did not reveal any pictures of the petroglyphs, nor did I find any hiking information. By looking at maps and satellite photos, I was able to find a path that took me from Route 95 to the place where Picture Rock was shown on the map but I did not see any petroglyphs. To make the hike longer and more interesting, I took a path through Blankenship Valley where satellite photos showed what looked like sand dunes.
Valley with white dirt
Satellite photos show a valley with white colored dirt near Picture Rock. I hiked to a saddle where part of the valley came to view. To get into the valley, I had to go down a nasty slope the bottom of which I could not see so I just took a picture and left.
The map below pinpoints where I parked. This is on the east side of Route 95 north of Lake Havasu City south of the hill with communication tower, across from the sign saying “Entering Lake Havasu City” (who knows how long that sign will remain at that spot). A little south of mile marker 192.
Picture Rock via Blankenship Valley Sand Dunes
This is a description of my hike to Picture Rock. There were no signs and no trails.
Roundtrip Hiking Distance:
From where I parked, I crossed to the west side of Route 95 and went a very short distance north to get to a nameless dirt road going west. The road quickly went down into a dry wash. I left the road and followed the dry wash going southwest. California’s Chemehuevi Mountain could be seen in the distance.
After a mile, I reached a sign that marked the boundary of Lake Havasu Wilderness. Continuing down the wash, sand dunes appeared to the west. I left the wash heading west to reach the the top of the ridgeline formed by the sand dunes.
|Chemehuevi Mountain |
|Crossman Peak |
Went down the other side of the sand dunes veering northwest to reach a big flat area known as Blankenship Valley.
Another big sand dune to the northeast.
Dead Burro Canyon was also visible to the distant northeast.
Zoomed view of Dead Burro Canyon
Zoomed view of The Needles to the north.
Zoomed view of The Needles
A look back at Chemehuevi Mountain.
At the north end of Blankenship Valley, I reached a valley that went north among the mountains.
Zoomed view of a wild Burro.
The valley became rocky. Went up a slope on the east side.
I then reached a broad 660 ft high saddle. The impressive Peak 1557 ft could be seen to the east.
Peak 1557 ft
Big white wall.
An arch appeared to the west above a slope.
East face of the arch
Another view of Peak 1557 ft.
Peak 1557 ft
The Needles and Tumarion Peak to the north.
|Tumarion Peak |
To the north of the 660 ft saddle, I got into another drainage that slowly made a 180 degree turn heading southwest. I was soon on the other side of the arch that I had seen earlier.
West face of the arch
Big mushroom rock.
Continuing down the drainage toward Lake Havasu.
I then reached where Picture Rock was marked on the USGS Map. Muddy marshland stopped me from reaching the shore of the lake. From where I was, I did not see any petroglyphs.
Looking back at the arch and the valley I had descended.
Valley with White Dirt
At the north end of Blankenship Valley I went up a slope as noted on the above map to reach a saddle where the valley with white dirt came to view.
Valley with white dirt