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Petroglyph National Monument Rating: None

New Mexico Attractions / Landmarks / Places > Albuquerque Email This Bookmark Print
Petroglyph National Monument presents more than 25,000 prehistoric and historic Native American and Hispanic petroglyphs, images carved in rock, stretch 17-miles along Albuquerque's West Mesa escarpment. Associated archaeological sites dates the first human activity in this region to 12,000 ago, though most of the petroglyphs originated between 1300 and 1650. The petroglyphs are referred to as the Rio Grande style of rock art based on its content, complexity and style of execution.

Created by ancient lava flows, this expansive outdoor park is full of boulders, caves and rocks, many of which are marked by petroglyphs. Petroglyph National Monument protects these cultural and natural resources including five volcanic cones, hundreds of archeological sites and the thousands of petroglyphs.

Though its meaning only possibly understood by the carver, most of the petroglyphs are recognizable as people, animals, brands and crosses. These images can be viewed via various hiking areas and trails including the Volcano Day Use Area, Riconada Canyon, Boca Negra Canyon and Piedras Marcadas Canyon.

The Visitor's Center has an interactive computer on which guests can plan outings, and groups of 15 or more can arrange a personalized ranger-guided walking tour. Petroglyph National Monument is open year-round from 8 AM to 5 PM. Admission is free. Weekday parking is $1 while the weekend parking is $2.
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