It was the holiday weekend and the "campers" were out in droves. I use the term lightly. Calling what we saw "campers" would be like calling dude-ranchers cowboys.
From the Logandale trailhead down into the canyon, nearly every spot and then some was filled with 5th wheelers. Sure there were a few tents, but they were all adjoined to a "mansion" (and most likely were the servants quarters.)
Another oddity: I seemed to be the only one in the canyon riding an ATV, the rest were either "murdercycles" or "side-by-sides." Even Gordon brought his side-by-side. (Where else would his dog ride?)
Gordon has a dog which hid under his truck seat so he couldn't be extricated and left home - I think it wanted to go offroading!
Once in the canyon, however, we didn't see many others, except a kid whose "friends" were lost, and an interesting couple in a side-by-side who didn't have a map so had missed seeing the petroglyphs. We told them where the glyphs were so they could go back and see them.
The ride down the back of "the boot" (Logandale trail "A") was nice. The red cliffs glowed in the sun; but, moving at a brisk pace still kept us cool. At the heel we entered into the sandy wash and the desert climate asserted itself.
At the tip of the "sole" is where we met the couple we told you about. We climbed the first of two "pinch points" which makes the trail just a hair above "beginners" level.
The first set of petroglyphs along the trail were the same as last year (I'm sure much to the chagrin of the fiends of gold butte who love to point out the damage all us nasty offroaders do so they can use it to get the area completely closed off.)
We had a chance, while eating lunch, to analyze a set of petroglyphs in greater detail, and a chance for me to see if I could remember what I've read in all the petroglyph books, especially LaVan Martineau's The Rocks Begin to Speak
The two goats, facing opposite directions, represent groups of people going different directions. One group was smaller than the other and it's legs appear more wavy or weaker. The horns across the back, and relatively long mean a long journey, completed. It's tail is a deliberate square which is the "turning not aside" sign indicating determination.
It's face is oddly mis-shapen which may have a filled rectangle for a mouth. The rectangle is the sign for an "area" or "a place." Empty usually means "gone" - like was filled but now gone. When it's filled in, it means the opposite or "full." Perhaps a smaller number of the group was determined for some reason to remain in the area. At least there seems to have been a parting of the ways.
The person above the goats seems to be at one end of a trail symbol, which is often drawn in the shape of the trail they either already have or are about to take. The interesting thing about this symbol is the rectangle in the area of his stomach. An empty rectangle has the meaning of an "empty area," which with it's location over the stomach must mean "empty belly" or "hunger" etc.
From the "hungry man" petroglyph it wasn't far to the "buckle" of the boot and the protective fence. Petroglyphs 2 are just inside the fence on the North side and appear to be quite jumbled - a sort of "newspaper" rock.
That's what rocks are called around the area which seem to have many authors at various points in time - sort of a "newspaper" to let others know of happenings. I'm told that when families are grown and one leaves that may mean that they are never met again in person. But, having developed a sort of "favorite place," one may be there in march of one year, and another be there in February of another year, yet both can keep track of each other - loosly.
The best petroglyphs are at site 3 in the back of the canyon, a half-mile hike. Photos of the site are contained inside the Google Earth file of today's trail.
Today, the sun bounching off the canyon walls increased the temperature substantially. Along with the all the bouncing along the washboards, the heat seemed to do Gordon's dog in - not a happy camper.
I have found out that there ain’t no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them.”
The ride up the remainder of the "boot" did cool us off a bit as the sweat dried. All-in-all a good ride - at least for the two of us. The dog is laying in the back seat with all four legs in the air.
Why Not Learn More
The book "The Rocks Begin To Speak" is probably the landmark text which opened this field of study to large numbers of people, and it is still in print, new or used at Amazon. Why not make your trips to the "Glyphs of Gold Butte" more meaningful by learning a few of the "meanings" of the glyphs you see? If you are going to purchase it, please consider doing so using the links on this page. There will be no extra cost to you, but a portion will go to keeping this site going and the trails coming.