The basin has a huge lake (Lake Roosevelt), and half way through the basin you will find some of the most amazing cliff dwellings. These beautiful homes were built with native rock and stuccoed. With roofs that were made of saguaro ribs and mesquite headers over windows and doors, this place provided ample food for wandering tribes.
The people who built the cliff dwellings (which are now a National Park treasure) are referred to as the Salado people. They originally settled in this area of the Salt River (salado) while human congestion provided the incentive to move to higher ground.
I have an article along with a slide show that goes into more detail and is set up a bit like a tour guide. If you are interested in finding out more about this, please click the following link. http://hubpages.com/hub/The-Cliff-Dwellings-of-the-Tonto-Basin-AZ-Salado-People