Desert Wells Stage Stop, Queen Creek, Arizona

Desert Wells Stage Stop, Queen Creek, Arizona main

Desert Wells Stage Stop is a quiet little area great for a picnic and a history lesson.

Getting There

Desert Wells Stage Stop

The San Tan Historical Society clams the ruin as a historical site. It is located on the northeast side of Chandler Heights Road and Sossaman Road in Queen Creek, Arizona. If you fly into Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport and want to view this piece of history it is only 5 miles down the road.

Ruins of the Desert Wells Stage Stop

The ruins are fenced off; therefore you can’t go into the ruins. There is a very nice bench with a shade. It was built as an Eagle Scout Project by Will Craghead in 2007.

There are no restrooms.

There is parking. Elevation is 1,370 ft per Maricopa Country Parks.

This location is part of the Maricopa Trail.

Per the onsite signage, Sylvester Andrada and Jose Barragan the landowners from 1868-69. Did they keep trees for shade? Did they think about planting or watering the trees to increase the shade? In addition to shade did they consider making sure water would be available? How far forward did they plan?

As I sat in the shade on the bench, in late May around 11 am with 103 degrees Fahrenheit, I thought what it would be like to drive cattle over this area in the 1860s. Within 2 hours the temperature was up to 112  degrees Fahrenheit. What happened if the well went dry? If the well was dry when they arrived did they rest or keep moving forward? I was grateful to get into my air-conditioned car and head to an air-conditioned building.


Horse tie

This area has many horse properties and horse trails. Therefore seeing a spot to tie up your horses is normal. During the cooler months, many people will ride their horses to this spot. 

Town of Queen Creek Historical Site

Historical Site

This is a watering stop of the Arizona Stage Company livestock until 1916. The 114’ deep well held an average of 14’ of water. The water was pumped to the stone tank by a small traction engine and pump per the signs on site.

Desert Wells Stage Stop, Queen Creek, Arizona

Desert Wells Stage Stop End

There are many signs with additional details about the location. It is fascinating to learn what took place back in time.

Do you think in 1868 you could handle the heat and running cattle?

36 thoughts on “Desert Wells Stage Stop, Queen Creek, Arizona
  1. Small historical sites are often forgotten. Nice to be reminded of local history.

  2. Very interesting! I love visiting places like this and learning more about the history of the area.

  3. Oh I can’t even imagine how hot it would be in 1868 with no air conditioning to look forward to. I don’t think I would’ve survived.

  4. I love these types of stops – a little history lesson is always good for the soul. And no, I don’t think I would’ve had what it takes to run cattle… especially in that type of heat!!

  5. What a cool stop. Certainly a great part of American history. I would love to ride up to this stop on my horse and tie it off, how fun.

  6. I don’t think I’d last an hour in that heat! It’s amazing to think how strong people were back then. Our society has definitely become accustomed to our comforts and air conditioning!

  7. Wow, I would not want to sit in 112 degrees or drive cattle in the 1860s. That is really hot!

  8. We’ve been kicking around a trip to Arizona next month since our plans changed. This would be so cool to see! I’ll keep it in mind.

    1. Depending on where you visit in AZ in July, it will be hot. If you visit areas in the higher elevations and woods that should be nice. If you visit the Phoenix valley area – just know that we have been having excessive heat warnings and they are advising to stay inside.

  9. I love visiting historic places and learning about times long past. This looks awesome.

  10. It looks so dry and hot! I could not handle running cattle in the heat! But how fun to stop for a visit and learn.

  11. This looks like a cool place to check out. I’m not sure I would enjoy the heat though. I burn pretty easily.

  12. Interesting! Love that Az has all these little hidden gems around town! Will have to check this one out too!

  13. Missy and Hunter are the hidden Gems here at Encanterra! So knowledgeable and forever sabbatical.

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