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Memorial Day Weekend: Palo Verde/Blythe Intaglios Messages in this topic - RSS

tommy750
tommy750
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5/29/2012
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 876
Palo Verde Point and Blythe Intaglios are just a wee bit outside ABDSP and Kumeyaay territory, but they're so cool you have to see these sites. Both sites, for better or worse, are mere yards from major desert highways. Both have signage and barriers in place. Had some free time yesterday so headed toward the river to see the Palo Verde petroglyphs, a series of stunning panels carved in limestone along ancient trails on the west side of the Colorado. Unfortunately, they're being eroded rather rapidly and blasting at a quarry straddling the site has probably led to some collapses.

This Chevy, easily seen on Google Earth, marks the approximate southern extent of the site and is less than 10 miles south of Palo Verde.


Wreck From Space by tomteske, on Flickr

Numerous panels are present in various arroyos over the next mile. As you can see, the highway is very close in places.


Blythe South Sign by tomteske, on Flickr


Blythe South Panel2 by tomteske, on Flickr


Blythe South Anthromorph Panel by tomteske, on Flickr


Blythe South Panel 2 by tomteske, on Flickr


Blythe South Panel3 by tomteske, on Flickr

Although these petroglyphs are somewhat to the East of Kumeyaay territory, they still have stylistic similarities and contain my favorite glyph, the "digitate anthromorph."


Digitate Anthromorphs by tomteske, on Flickr

A detailed description of the site by archeologist Ken Hedges is here: http://www.scahome.org/publications/proceedings/Proceedings.18Hedges.pdf

The Blythe Intaglios were discovered in the 1930's when a local pilot noticed them returning from Las Vegas. There are multiple sites, both anthromorphic and zoomorphic and are really cool to see. The desert pavement is very smooth and very varnished at this site which creates the stark contrast.


Blythe Intaglio Sign by tomteske, on Flickr

Not sure how the Indians viewed these except close up. The nearest hill is about a mile away. My technique for photographing these was sticking the camera at the top of my monopod and holding it as high as possible. Still not the best aerial view.


Blythe Intaglio by tomteske, on Flickr


Blythe Intaglio2 by tomteske, on Flickr

The BLM link is below. Enjoy. Tom

http://www.blm.gov/az/st/en/prog/cultural/intaglios.html
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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5/29/2012
dsefcik
dsefcik
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Nice, I already saw them in your Flickr stream..thanks for sharing. I gotta get out there soon and see them, almost went over Christmas but didn't make it.

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surfponto
surfponto
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5/30/2012
surfponto
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Those are great.
Amazing that they are so close to the highway.
Have never been up that way but would like to check it out, thanks to your pics and trip report,

Bob

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dsefcik
dsefcik
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5/30/2012
dsefcik
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The BLM website mentions (6) glyphs total at (3) different sites, do they all still exist and did you visit them? You only show photos of (2) glyphs.

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ziphius
ziphius
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5/30/2012
ziphius
ziphius
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Those intaglios and panels are amazing. Anyone know the estimated ages on them?

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tommy750
tommy750
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5/30/2012
tommy750
tommy750
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dsefcik wrote:
The BLM website mentions (6) glyphs total at (3) different sites, do they all still exist and did you visit them? You only show photos of (2) glyphs.


There are six near the road: three stick figures, two animals and a serpent. They're located at three sites, two north of the dirt road and one across an arroyo to the south. To me, there's another one outside the south enclosure that looks like a circle with a cross drawn through it. So many tire tracks nearby, it makes it hard to know what's ancient. Reportedly, there's more up the road but they may not be on BLM land. Search "Blythe Intaglios" on Google Earth and you can see them all from space. Tom
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tommy750
tommy750
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5/30/2012
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 876
ziphius wrote:
Those intaglios and panels are amazing. Anyone know the estimated ages on them?


From the little I've read, seems like the estimates are quite variable. Up to thousands of years ago. Tom
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 876


5/30/2012
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 876
surfponto wrote:
Those are great.
Amazing that they are so close to the highway.
Have never been up that way but would like to check it out, thanks to your pics and trip report,

Bob


Have driven by there a dozen times and never knew about either site. The intaglio site now has large signs and a monument marker which are recent. Tom
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5/30/2012
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Posts: 16
tommy750 wrote:
ziphius wrote:
Those intaglios and panels are amazing. Anyone know the estimated ages on them?


From the little I've read, seems like the estimates are quite variable. Up to thousands of years ago. Tom


I'm not sure about the geoglyphs, but the petroglyphs are quite tricky to attempt to place a date on. The reason why the dates being thrown around are so variable is because it appears they were probably carved over a long period of time due to the different styles (lightly pecked, deeply pecked, broad lines, geometric elements, etc). Adding to the problem is the fact that these were carved into Limestone panels which is much more difficult to date than the basalt (which they usually are carved into), but they're thought be from about 500ad - 1500/1600ad. Some have suggested the earliest carvings could be from the archaic period which is from 5000-2000bc, but that's a huge stretch and not very well supported if you ask me.
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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5/30/2012
dsefcik
dsefcik
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tommy750 wrote:
Search "Blythe Intaglios" on Google Earth and you can see them all from space. Tom


wow...almost like actually going there...except you can see them better! Thanks for that info, very cool...

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