Monday, July 26, 2010
Petroglyph National Monument
We were not allowed to get close to the petroglyphs at Petrified Forest so we decided to make a stop at Petroglyph National Monument in the heart of Albuquerque. Here the petroglyphs are not behind fences or chains, you can reach right out and touch them! There are over 20,000 petroglyphs covering the black volcanic rock in the area. Although no one knows for sure what they mean some of the drawings may relate to tribal folk tales, others are representations of animals, plants, and shapes. Some of them looked like cartoons to me!
This next one has a snake at the top, some arrows, maybe stars?, and other odd shapes.
It was fun to guess what the pictures were meant to be. Is this a rat stealing a lollipop?!
We noticed that at both sites we saw hand and footprints etched into the stone. We wondered if this was the Native Americans' version of a self-portrait, just like modern kids writing "Joe wuz here!" Another thing we saw over and over again was a spiral shape. A Ranger at Petrified showed us one that was positioned so that when a ray of sun came through a crack in the rock to land on the spiral it signaled the Summer Solstice. Cool!
While we were hiking on a narrow, rocky path up the mountainside a huge storm blew in and the wind started howling!
The wind must have been gusting up to 40 or 50 mph! It was just trying to blow us off the mountain and of course we had both worn flip flops. Here is a picture of me hiding from the wind; it's blowing my hair straight back!
We made it home okay and next time we will remember to wear tennis shoes!