Marja-Leena Rathje
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Range Creek Canyon art


It's been awhile since I wrote about rock art...

Many of us know about the fantastic collections of native rock art in Utah, USA. The quality and quantity of beautiful rock art in the Range Creek Canyon of Utah first sparked my interest when I read an article in the August 2006 issue of National Geographic magazine. It's an interesting story...

For 50 years Utah cattle rancher Waldo Wilcox protected an astounding collection of artifacts left by the prehistoric Fremont culture--including countless panels of rock art. "The Indian stuff? My father always said to leave it alone," he says. Which he did--and more. By gating the road to his property near the mouth of Range Creek Canyon, he blocked access to tens of thousands of acres of unspoiled backcountry where the Fremont had farmed, hunted game, and gathered wild plants from about A.D. 400 until their culture mysteriously disappeared almost a thousand years later. Ready to retire, Wilcox sold his land in 2001. The state of Utah, its current owner, is now responsible for managing the future of this priceless legacy.

Check out the amazing examples of work in the photo gallery.

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Fremont petroglyphs at McKee Springs, Utah. Photograph by Ira Block, National Geographic

Today, I came across an update on the current situation in Range Creek Canyon in an article and excellent video at Remote Central, an archaeology and anthropology blog by Tim Jones that I've been following for some time.

By the way, there's another interesting article in Tim's blog on a subject I've written about several times: Fungus Once Again Threatens Lascaux Cave Paintings.

Marja-Leena | 17/12/2007 | 4 comments
themes: History, Rock Art & Archaeology


4 comments

Fascinating, what a blessing he preserved it all.

I meant to say how I enjoyed your St Lucia post too, and thank you for the link.

Lucy, yes, I thought so too. I just hope that the state doesn't change its mind later. And glad you liked the Lucia post - yours just happened to relate so well!

Thanks very much for the mention, and just to say I'm very glad to have discovered your site.

Range Creek looks like an amazing place to see, plus I think the Fremont rock art is some of the most spectacular of its kind.

Hi Tim, pleased to meet you and welcome! I do enjoy your in-depth articles, especially on the art side of archaeology, like this one. I'd love to see the rock art in Utah sometime but in the meantime, the net is a wonderful way to travel to many spectacular sites.