Happy Thanksgiving! I went on a local hike this morning in search of this petroglyph and decided to post this photo since I’m sure many of you feel this way right now after your large Thanksgiving dinner.
Here’s a photo from a new petroglyph panel I visited on Saturday near Montrose, Colorado. I’ve been wanting to visit the Shavano Valley Petroglyph Park for a while now, but never followed through in obtaining permission to go. Last week a got a call from my friend Greg who was planning on visiting the site so it was the perfect time for me to finally get out there. We met up at the site around sunrise (which meant it was a very early morning for us) and spent a few hours exploring and photographing the petroglyphs. This is certainly one of the better petroglyph sites I have visited in the area and the bears in this panel are very cool.
On my way home from The Needles this last weekend, I took the long way home from Monticello so that I could make a few quick stops at some new rock art sites in Western Colorado. The main site I wanted to visit was this one, located on a large boulder along the Dolores River. These petroglyphs are very unique and are believed to be a cross between the Glen Canyon Style and the Uncompahgre Style. They sure do look a little like aliens 😉
Yesterday evening I set out shortly before sunset to find some new petroglyphs not far from my home. I have been by this site many times before and never knew it was there! This photo just shows a section of the panel of petroglyphs pecked into a large boulder along the Gunnison River. Like many of the other petroglyphs in the area, these appear to be of Ute origin. So far, this is one of the better panels near my home, and thankfully they haven’t been too vandalized, either.
It’s been a few years since I hiked down McDonald Creek, but since I stayed home this weekend I thought it might make a nice Sunday morning hike. This is one of the four rock art panels I found in the canyon this trip. I’m not quite sure what the largest figure really is, but it kind of resembles a bird to me, so that’s what I’m going to call it.
Say hello to The Guardian. This prominent figure greets you as you enter the Canyon Pintado National Historic District from the south. Located at the White Hands site, it’s a very short walk to visit this pictograph along the highway. Is this anthropomorph Barrier Canyon Style or is it Fremont? According to the interpretative sign below, it is believed that this figure might be from a transitional period between Barrier Canyon Style and Fremont. Either way, this is a very unique pictograph in a highly visible location.
This historical and beautifully incised horse is carved right above the very colorful lichen on this sandstone wall. It is believed that this horse was most likely created by a Ute which may depict their encounters with the U.S. Calvary. The number ‘8’ on the front hip of the horse is most likely a brand that has been traced back to General Crook’s command, who was chasing the Apache through Arizona and New Mexico in the late 1800s. It’s possible this carving may be of a captured horse.
While visiting this site, the biting gnats were terrible! If I stopped moving for more than a few seconds they swarmed around me and were unbearable. As I searched the area I was lucky to find a few of the petroglyphs, including this one, and managed to pull off a few photos before the bugs overran me. I’m sure I missed some petroglyphs at this site since I had to keep moving, so I will need to return another time to finish exploring.