Thursday, July 21, 2016

Flag Point: dino tracks and petroglyph awesomeness

Wonderful pictographs at Flag Point near Kanab

One of many huge three-toed dino tracks

Flag point is a surreal place just  a few miles east of Kanab that is littered with dinosaur tracks (HUGE ONES) and pictographs/petroglyphs. It's a special feeling to make it up to the track site. The hike is not for the person afraid of heights, or climbs, or the causal day-hiker. It's a gorgeous trek up a mountain with views for miles, but also a bit tricky and precarious when you get close to the top. I only recommend this hike for the explorer who is in good physical shape, not deterred by free climbing and scrambling on loose rocks w/ steep drop-offs, and also maybe not afraid of snakes :)

This gorgeous guy slithered his way right across our path. Didn't even rattle!
This adventure was shared with my friend, Casey. It's always fun taking someone to a spot they've never been to. Casey loves rock art as much as me, and I knew she'd been blown away by this place.

We drove out to the "trail head" (loosely called this, as there's no real trail head.. more like bush-whacking!) After about a 1/2 mile through sage brush, we found our first cairn (rocks stacked up to indicate the path). Following the cairns up a steep and winding trail, we came to the first real obstacle. We needed to get to the next rock level but there was no easy way up! We saw two paths ahead --- one that would allow us to climb up via moki steps (alternating hand and toe holds carved into vertical sandstone surfaces) or another somewhat precarious route that would involve shimmying up some rocks and wedging our bodies into little crevices and grabbing onto rocks to pull ourselves up (kinda scary cuz of the drop offs below!)

We chose the latter and it was a little scary :) but we made it! Right there in front of us was our first rock art site.

I like this sad looking guy. But wonder why so sad? Someone suggested it's a scene of child birth because of the upside down person i the middle. What do you think??

I was excited to take Casey to the pictograph cave. We were close! Following the worn trail up and around a few bends, we finally got there.

What makes this so unique is that right above this alcove is the track site. You can see that the art here depicts people with large "toes" and other tracks. I can only imagine what the Indians who lived here thought of those dino tracks and the stories they must have told about who or what could have made them.



Casey checks out the artwork. Really cool, right??!


bird/dino man?
After checking out this sweet rock art, we headed up above the alcove to the dinosaur tracks. I had forgotten how HUGE the tracks were! And how many there are! WOW!!

Giant theropod dino track

hand vs talon (or whatever -- crazy big and awesome!)

fun stuff!

more tracks!

close up!


glamour shot
I love love love this place so much! And I also don't want to minimize the super freakin amazing views on this hike!

The climb up!
Neat "natural" rock art :)

On the edge

cliffs and stuff
This is a great hike with some good juju :) If you're up for the challenge, it's well worth it! Remember (I feel like mommy here...) do NOT touch rock art and leave no trace. Thank you :)

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