Three Rivers Petroglyph Site, New Mexico

In April 2008 we visited the Three Rivers Petroglyph Site in New Mexico.

The Three Rivers petroglyphs are examples of prehistoric Jornada Mogollon rock art. The basaltic ridge rising above the Three Rivers Valley contains over 21,000 petroglyphs, including masks, sunbursts, wildlife, hand prints, and geometric designs. These pictures were made about 1000 years ago.

Three Rivers petroglyph site

The pictures were made by removing the dark patina on the exterior of the rock, either by scratching or pecking through the patina with two rocks used like a hammer and chisel.

Three Rivers petroglyph site

Three Rivers petroglyph site

This was our second stop on our trip to California through New Mexico and Arizona, after we drove through the area where the first atomic bomb (the site was named Trinity) was tested by the scientists from Los Alamos working under Robert Oppenheimer. We were shocked at how close the little town of Carrizozo, NM is to ground zero.

We stayed overnight in a small campground, Valley of Fire, the site of a large lava flow. The wind was blowing at about 50 mph during our short stay in the area.

Valley of Fire

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