Petroglyphs

On the outskirts of Albuquerque lies Petroglyph National Monument. Petroglyphs are created by carving off top layers of rock to use contrasting colors to make a selected form. Pictographs are painted on.

A rock with three possibly separate images on it.

The Petroglyph National Monument features 25,000 or more spread across 17 miles–it’s one of the largest sites of Native American and Spanish rock art that is generally known. I use that phrasing because it is possible there are other, larger sites which are not generally known. It’s my understanding that many tribes don’t share locations with rock art–because Western cultures tend not to respect them. (And that’s putting it mildly.)

This site, however, is generally known and part of the National Park Service. I stopped by while passing through Albuquerque. It was a hot summer day and I didn’t have anywhere near as much time as the site deserved. Nevertheless, I took a short hike up and around a hill with hundreds of images. It’s definitely worth a visit if you’re in the area!

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