Friday, February 26, 2016

Pictographs, Petroglyphs, and now Geoglyphs !

North of Blythe, California
February 13, 2010

Sometimes it is by the wandering spirit and sheer luck that you find something you weren't looking for but glad you did. I've seen my share of Native American pictographs and petroglyphs as I've traveled through the West, but I don't remember if I've come across a geoglyph. I remember reading about geoglyphs as a teen when I went through a phase learning about aliens—the ones out there in space watching us. In 1968 Erich von Daniken wrote "Chariots of the Gods" hypothesizing that aliens visited our ancient cultures and imparted to mankind new technologies and religions worshiping these ancient astronauts. Part of his proof, mostly now debunked, were the giant geoglyphs of Nazca and Pampas de Jumana in South America. These geoglyphs ranged from simple lines and geometric shapes to figures of animals and humans up to 660 feet across. That is how I came to know the definition of a geoglyph: a large-scale drawing on the ground made by the arranging of rocks and other materials on the surface or the scraping away of the surface materials. Since then I have not thought much about geoglyphs.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Magazine Mountain - The Highpoint of Arkansas

Magazine Mountain, Mount Magazine State Park, Arkansas
November 25, 2011

The trail head to the highpoint of Arkansas
After recently checking off #44 of the states’ highest points, I wanted to continue to get higher and higher with my highpoints. I continued the trend of bagging the lower highpoints by detouring from here to there. This time the here was Texas and the there I was going to was Indiana. Arkansas was on the way and the highpoint of The Natural State was not too far from the interstate. Driving in from the north, at least I was able to see the highpoint from afar although the particular spot did not stand out. Magazine Mountain is a flat-topped plateau which looms above the surrounding terrain.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

A Tripoint on Water

Fort Defiance Park, Cairo, Illinois   
November 19, 2011

Some tripoints aren’t easy to get to because they are on water (or is it underwater). The Connecticut-New York-Rhode Island tripoint is actually on saltwater of the Long Island Sound. Nonetheless, most water tripoints can be spotted from land, and I was satisfied with this approach for my first water tripoint experience. The tripoint of Illinois-Kentucky-Missouri is in the middle of the Mississippi River where the Ohio River joins it. From the southern tip of Illinois in Cairo, the tripoint can be easily seen from Fort Defiance Park (when the Mississippi and Ohio rivers are not flooding). You point southeast and somewhere within a half-mile of your finger is the meeting point of Illinois, Kentucky, and Missouri. And I say you can check that tripoint off your list :)

The confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers as viewed from Fort Defiance Park
The tripoint of Illinois - Kentucky - Missouri is somewhere in the middle right of the photo

Web Links

Wikipedia - Tripoint