Monday, April 25, 2016

Space Man Petroglyph - Joshua Tree National Park

I spent a lot of time in Joshua Tree last week, trying to tie up some loose ends. Also, looking for rock art that I either haven't seen for a long time, or that was almost invisible last time I saw it.

The single little petroglyph in this post falls into the first category, and is one of my all time favorites. To me, it looks like a spaceman.

These first three photos are only here because I like them. They may, or may not be anywhere near this petroglyph site.



I've searched for this little site twice, and came away empty handed both times. This time, my wife walked right up and said, "what's that?" See the little depression just to the right and near the top of the the yellow flowers?

 A closer look at the depression. Do you see the little white figure on the right side? It's about 10 inches high.

 Here is a close up of it. This photo isn't mine and is about 45 years old.

I took this photo about a week ago. As you can see, the granite is decomposing and taking the petroglyph with it.

DStretch isn't really meant to enhance petroglyphs, but it does allow us to see this one better because of the contrast.



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26 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

It's either a space man or a space rabbit...
At that rate, it will be gone in about fifty years, won't it?

William Kendall said...

I'm reminded of a rabbit too.

TheChieftess said...

I rather like the space rabbit idea!

jeannettestgermain said...

Hello Patrick - thank you for keeping your promise and adding this to SEASONS - many thanks - I appreciate what it cost you to take these photos! A great capture of the spaceman petroglyph - good your wife was there:):) So how do you determine how old this feature is? Are there certain features you measure by?

Esther Montgomery said...

I'm beginning to find it hard to comment because I think I've run out of complementary superlatives. It's all just wonderful this. (And as an aside, I'd happily put a huge version of the photo of the rocks with the flowers (where you initially indicate where the little drawing will be found) on my wall.) I'm living this landscape - a landscape I doubt I will ever see in person - through you. Many thanks for your blog.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

What a story this sets up in my mind -- it almost T needs a novel written about it -- retro science fiction of something. amazing. Thanks for sharing and really thank you for your photograph documenting this wonder which isn't going to be there for ever obviously.

Al said...

What a strange petroglyph - I'm sure people have some interesting theories about this one.

Should Fish More said...

Hey Pat
I have only been to that park once, when I was on a road trip with my camper 5 years or so ago. I stayed in the large campground, and was one of two campers there.
Cheers,
Mike

Chandra@GreenComotion said...

Wow - I really enjoyed this post and the photos!
The geological importance of these rocks are something I did not know about until now.
Have a Happy Week ahead!!
Peace :)
PS. Batman is very awesome. It is a different world without our pets for sure.

sage said...

I love the desert country--thanks for taking me back.

bettyl-NZ said...

What a wonderful place for photos and it seems you enjoy taking them. I had no idea this petroglyph was in Joshua Tree Park.

Ms. A said...

Definitely makes you wonder!

jandi said...

very interesting!

Wayne said...

Jackrabbit or space man? Tough to decide.

Brian said...

That is very cool Pat! The truth is out there...somewhere!

Liz said...

How very interesting! It's a shame that the art is disappearing though.

Ida said...

Gorgeous scenery and my one would have to look hard for that pertroglyph. It does look like a space alien of some kind.

Sharon Wagner said...

I am going to imagine that it was carved after seeing a real space man. Back in the day. Great photos of the potato like rock formations. It's Such an interesting part of the country. I'm going to Sedona, Arizona this summer. So, I'll finally see some similar turf.

robin andrea said...

Love those first photos, such stunning rock formations and skies there. This petroglyph is so interesting, does make me wonder what inspired such artistry.

Anthony J. Langford said...

Wonderful shots again Patty.
Such a shame to see the degradation of the art over time.
If that's only 45 years, imagine what was there a couple hundred years ago.

Soon, it'll all be gone.

:(

eileeninmd said...

Hello, beautiful views of the park and the rock art is awesome. The pteroglyph does look like a spaceman. Wonderful photos! Happy Friday, enjoy your weekend!

Ron said...

Wow Pat, that is the COOLEST! And not only because it DOES look like some kind of spaceman, but also because you and your wife spotted it!

You photographs (as usual) are absolutely gorgeous! I especially like the second one of the bright blue sky against the rock formations. Beautiful!

Thanks so much for sharing and have a grrrreat week!

VEG said...

I had no idea you were still in Joshua Tree last week! I was there too! Around the 20th to 22nd approximately (I think!) We may have crossed paths...spooky. I posted a photo from there, today (of a tree as I'm addicted to Joshua Trees, they're just awesome). Finally I got there!

TexWisGirl said...

how cool!

Baby Sister said...

How am I this far behind??

Beautiful pictures! That petroglyph is cool! It's kind of neat/sad to see the decomposing process. It certainly makes you wonder what they saw all those years ago.

Pat Tillett said...

Baby Sister - I'm betting you have been very busy! Oh yeah, I can't even imagine what they all looked like when new.