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Thursday, April 5, 2012

101 Places to See Before You're 12 - A Rock Art Site

A Rock Art Site

After visiting Arches National Park, we wanted to see the famous Petroglyphs before we left the area.

Moab is famous as a Rock Art Site with numerous locations where petroglyphs (carved pictures) and pictographs (painted pictures) remain untouched from hundreds and thousands of years ago.

Here is one example in Moab - we did not hunt for this one, so the source is listed below.

After hiking around Arches National Park and having a great Italian lunch in town, we returned to the National Park to ask about nearby petroglyphs.  The park ranger told us about some not far from the entrance to the park.  There would be a small hike to get to it, but it was worth it.  Off we went.

Armed with just my iPhone again (and thank goodness), we started following the path, having really no idea where we were going, but were certainly up for a "short hike" in the heat.  (We kept saying we were glad it was March and not July!)

We kept going and going, wondering if we were on the right path.

We saw an informational marker off in the distance so we kept going (Thomas leading the way).
See the sijil by David's foot?  Same as at Arches National Park.  We knew we weren't lost.

Sijils marking the way by previous hikers

The marker told us our hike was just beginning.  Now we had to go straight up.

We're not really seeing anything, but then I looked to the left.

Despite our protests that it was too steep to climb, Brennan took off.

And discovered some Petroglyphs!

Big brother had to get in on the action

You can't even see our car.  It's waaay back around the right in a parking lot.

And back down we went

While we didn't see a ton of Petroglyphs face to face, we did see a number of others around to the left, but we weren't able to climb straight up there.  We understand there are a lot of accessible ones in the area.  It was really fun to see and try to determine when the may have been carved.  Most online information says this grouping was from 300-200 B.C., but potentially as late as 300 A.D.  That's really awesome to see!

From the Book:
#19 - A Rock Art Site
It's not a place for CD cover art - it's a place where you can find 5,000-year-old engravings and paintings, just sitting right there on the rocks!  No tickets, no glass cases -  just petroglyphs (engravings on stone) and pictographs (paintings on stone), some from the time of the last Ice Age.  These images of people, bison, mountain lions, coyotes, and other animals have survived (in the wind, rain, and snow for thousands of years) even though the people who created them have disappeared, leaving no other trace of their culture.  Wouldn't it be cool to make something that last that long?

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