Massai Point is just one of the attractions of the wild and beautiful Chiricahua National Monument, it is a high vantage point to take in the views of the rest of the park and the surrounding region. At 6,870 feet elevation and 2,000 feet above the neighboring valleys, it is a Sky Island. This Earthcache experience offers a wide variety of amazing natural features mingled with a rich human history. Upon completion of this challenge, the geocacher will understand what natural processes took place to create the unique rock formations of columns, pinnacles, and balanced rocks that are the main attraction at this park. They will learn the names of the various rock types that the stone features are comprised of. They will also understand what natural forces created the surrounding mountain ranges and valleys. As a bonus, human history facts are included in the quest. Upon completion, visitors must submit, by email, the answers to four questions that can only be found by visiting the Earthcache and participating in the educational trail in order to get credit for “finding” this cache.
You must pay an entrance fee to access the park by car. The road up to Massai Point is sometimes closed in the winter due to snow and ice. Please stay on established trails. The total distance covered is under 1500 feet with only a few feet loss and gain in elevation. The entire course is wheel chair accessible with assistance. All necessary course and answer data is provided on the National Park’s interpretive signs. No additional research is necessary. There are many other educational and directional (trail) signs along the path that are not included in this Earthcache experience but which also supply a great wealth of natural and human history information. We have designed this cache to be web-solving and short-cutting resistant.
Point One: At the posted coordinates, a sign illustrates how huge blocks of the Earth’s crust were thrust up to create the surrounding mountains, and other blocks sank down forming the valleys and basins. The illustration shows ___ (A) named valleys and ___ (B) named mountain ranges. Apply the missing numbers in the last sentence to the next set of coordinates to get to point two. N32° 00.530 W109° 18.7A B.
Point Two: The sign here helps you to see a profile of the head of the great Apache Indian chief, Cochise, in a colossal rock formation. His eyelash is formed by a _ _ _ foot Douglas Fir tree. Find answer #1 here. Add 402 to the number missing from the last sentence to determine the missing values for the next point. N32° 00._ _ _ W109° 18.696
Point Three explains why the San Simon Valley has turned from fertile grassland into a desert shrub-land. Subtract ‘3’ from the only date on this sign to derive the missing easting in the next set of coordinates. These coordinates will get you to point four: N32° 00.498 W109° _ _._ _4
Point Four is a sign describing the Cochise Stronghold rock formation which is part of the Dragoon Mountain range across the valley toward the west and usually visible from here. The Dragoon Mountains are named for an elite type of military unit that patrolled there in the _ _ _ _s. Add 25 years to the missing date from the last sentence to determine the easting in the next set of coordinates which will take you to the final point. N32° 00.432 W109° _ _._ _2
Point Five: At this location you can clearly see and understand the natural processes that form the columns, pinnacles, and balanced rocks that this park is so famous and loved for. Find the answers to questions 3-4 on the sign here.
1) The Cochise Head rock formation is made of _____ ______, a rock formed from _____ _____.
2) The deep vertical cracks pointed out here are called _______.
3) The formation displayed here was started by how many of these cracks_______.
4) The formations are made of _______ (type of rock).
Please email all four answers to Team Scrawlinn for credit.You may go ahead and log your find without an acknowledgement from us, but logs posted without correct answers will be deleted. Please don't post pictures of the signs used in the quest. Thank you for your interest in our Earthcache!
This Earthcache was approved by:
Superintendent Brian Carey & Chief Ranger Andey Brinkley
Chiricahua National Monument and Fort Bowie National Historic Site
12856 East Rhyolite Creek Road
Willcox, AZ 85643
(520) 824-3560 x202 office
For more info on The Chiricahua National Monument go to: