Desert Messenger

February 15, 2012

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Page 13 of 39

Page 14 ADVENTURES WITH ROCKS Ancient Stories written in stone By Jenn Jedidiah Free As anyone who has spent time out here in the desert knows, the Sonoran desert can be a harsh and unfor- giving environment. We, with our modern conve- niences and inventions, have managed to make life here much more comfortable than it used to be. If we need food, we go to the grocery store. If we need fuel we go to the RV place and fill up our propane tanks. If we need water, we pump it in, or load up our tanks onto our motorized vehicles and drive to a place where we turn on a spigot and clean water Dorothy & Toto's Ice Cream Shoppe & New Location! 205 W. Main St. In front of D&B Leather, next to Silly Al's Lots of Parking Drive up Kettlecorn Cozy, warm, Indoor Seating Real Hand Dipped Ice Cream Old Fashioned Shakes & Malts flows out. In the harsh cold, we turn on a furnace. In the heat of the day, we turn on our air conditioners. Many times I have heard people say that they would never be able to live here in the desert if it wasn't for those modern conveniences. It seems as though we forget that people have lived here for thousands of years without those things. Here in Arizona the Hopi, the Navajo, the Havasupai, the Yavapai, the Yuma peoples, and the ancestral Anasazi, thrived in this harsh, yet beautiful land. We are fortunate to have many places here in the Quartzsite area where we can contemplate the an- cient way of life here in the desert. The two closest ones are Dripping Springs and the site along the east side of Tyson Wash between the La Paz and the Ty- son Wash BLM camping areas. Farther away, but well worth the trip, is Grapevine Canyon in Nevada, just north of Laughlin in the Lake Mead Recreation Area. This site is spectacular, with thousands of February 15, 2012 petroglyphs lining a gorgeous canyon. When visit- ing these ancient sites I frequently overhear the con- versations of other visitors. Quite often, people will walk up to a site, take a few quick photographs, and say, "I wonder what that means." Or "I wonder why that is here, in the middle of nowhere". Then they check it off their list and head off to the next thing on their agenda, never giving it a second thought. At the Tyson Wash site there are two panels of petroglyphs and an area with grinding holes across the wash on a rock outcrop. At the base of the rock with the main petroglyph panel is a water hole that goes deep into the water table at the base of the rock. When there was no other water to be found, there was water here and plenty of it. The other panel, on the south side of the outcropping is located above a small cave. Because of the water at this site, there is an abundance of vegetation and trees, as well as birds, and other wildlife. Bad Boys Cafe BREAKFAST AND LUNCH Quartzsite Marketplace 50 E. Kuehn, space 23 Open daily 7am-2:30pm Breakfast Served All Day! Q-TOWN CAFÉ 1099 W. Main St. Quartzsite, AZ 928-927-8600 Serving Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner DAILY SPECIALS OPEN 7am to 8pm Tues. thru Sun. Closed Mondays SWEET DARLENE'S RESTAURANT & BAKERY Winter Breakfast Specials Bacon & Eggs...........$ 399 Big Five .....................$ 450 Big Deal......................$ Stacker Bowl.............$ Western Scramble...$ Open Daily 7am-7pm 399 495 299 Coffee only 50¢ 776 E. MAIN ST., QUARTZSITE (at the I-10 Exit 19 off ramp) 928-927-9338 At Dripping Springs, on a 100 degree day, water was flowing out of the rock and accumulating in a small pool. The area was well shaded and full of trees and shrubs. The temperature around the spring was at least 20 degrees cooler than the desert just 50 yards away. In Grapevine Canyon, there is a stream with a waterfall, a small cave, and stands of wild grapes where the glyphs are located. To best understand these sites when visiting them, find a place to sit for awhile and contemplate the environment. Imagine yourself traveling across this hot, dry, windy, and dusty desert landscape, looking for a place that has what you need to sur- vive…food, water, shelter. Now look carefully at this place. Look around, away from this site, out into the desert and notice the difference. Think about the importance of this place to your survival. There is water here, the sustainer of all life. There is shelter here, in the trees and the rocks. There is food here, because the animals and plants need this water to survive also. During the heat of the day the tall trees SEE ROCKS ON PAGE 15 Wed. Thurs. Fri. Sat. Sun. 4-7pm FISH FRIDAYS! PRIME RIB SATURDAYS! *$ 275 min. 205 E. Main St. Quartzsite 928-927-4163 Main Street Eatery Open for Dinner The Gathering Place of Quartzsite for Good Food, Fun and Friendship! Breakfast & Lunch OPEN 6am-2pm VOTED #1 FAVORITE DESSERT FREE COFFEE with any meal*

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