Today’s #FridayFieldTrip was an exploration of some of the rock art in the White River Narrows. There were a few spots with amazing rock art, including the amphitheater, where these images came from. Huge, wide rock panels covered in lines of images.
For my #FridayFieldTrip, I returned to the Alamo area and searched once again for the Shooting Gallery Petroglyph site and this time I found it. Without GPS coordinates (and general mileage numbers), it would be virtually impossible to find the turn off. (Even with those it was pretty rough. Then, a portion of the second road has been washed out. Luckily, others had gone before me and blazed a bit of desert path as a bypass.
I was pretty excited when I found the registration box. I headed out, followed the directions I had, but spotted something up in the hills. So, I scrambled up the mountain of boulders and was rewarded with some excellent petroglyphs that weren’t in the GPS list. Plus, I got a good view of the valley.
I headed back down to the desert floor, followed the boulders to the west, and found an alcove that I know has been a village spot. I sat under an ancient juniper and mediated for quite a while, enjoying the shade of the old tree and the great energy of the place. That’s also where I found this petrolyph that really spoke to me.
Eventually, I got back into the wash and found several other glyphs. I didn’t climb up into the rocky canyon to get close to the Parhaganet Men, and I also never found the starburst antler deer. I thought I’d find them on my way back, but ended up in the wrong wash (there were at least three washes that converged into the valley.
On my way back to my truck, I suffered a bit of heat exhaustion and spent about an hour resting in a shady, sandy spot with my head filled with the knowledge that this was probably a place with big cats. (I’m reading Life of Pi, so big images of big cats fill my head!)
Anyway, I recovered, discovered I was walking up the wrong wash, and, using GPS, found my truck and then my way back out to the main road.
I don’t know why this site has caused me so many issues (two trips to find it, not seeing the “famous” rock art, heat exhaustion, et. al.) I do think I’ll go back in cooler weather and see if I can’t find the star burst and hike that side canyon, too. For now, I’m just happy to be alive to take another Friday Field Trip next week.
Spent my Friday Field Trip exploring some of the rock art (petroglyphs) at the sites around Mt. Irish in Nevada. It’s one of my favorite things to walk in sites where I know that ancient peoples have walked.
So many folks talk about the idea that America doesn’t have history like Europe. This is partially true, we
certainly don’t have the architectural history of European cities or China or Egypt or the Middle East. And, yet, we do have a long history of human activities in the US.
Research indicates that people have been living at Mt. Irish for nearly 2000 years: “the numerous petroglyphs, along
with scatters of chipped and ground-stone, pottery and rock shelters, suggest the sites were occupied from 1000 B.C. to the 1860s. Most of the petroglyphs are of the Great Basin Representational system (A.D. 1-1500) often depicting bighorn sheep and deer.” (LincolnCountyNevada.com)
We do have a rich history, it’s just different from other parts of the world.
I’m often alone on my field trips, but on Friday there were lots of folks visiting Mt. Irish, maybe because of the July 4th holiday weekend. It’s a mixed blessing to see people. Sometimes it’s nice to talk to them, but mostly, I’d rather just be on my journey without strangers.