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Chidago Petroglyphs, June 2010
Road north with small parking area to explore the Chidago site.
These petroglyphs are +/- 1,500 years old.
Scholars believe this was a ceremonial site where shaman practiced their spiritual magic.
Shaman would visit this site to experience vision quests and interpret what they saw while in trance.
We don't know. We weren't here at the time. But scholars believe only shaman carved these symbols.
A coiled snake petroglyph. Very likely living snakes are commonly seen among these boulders.
A square maze, sun symbols, hand prints, snakes, and a mountain goat.
Above these ancient symbols, the year 1921 has been faintly scratched into the rock.
Not all surfaces in this tumble of volcanic rock feature petroglyphs.
It is possible the central panel shown here illustrates a shaman's vision quest.
Defaced whirlwind symbol. Shaman believed they were lifted, spun high off the ground while in a trance.
Desecration exposes the soft, porous composition of the rock.
Circle with double bisecting lines could represent spinning or whirling while in trance.
Brightly colored Desert or Barred Spiny Lizard (photographed from some distance away).
There are atlatl, also known as throwing sticks, depicted among the petroglyphs at the site.
A group of concentric circles, spirals near the ground. And evidence vandals gouged, removed a carving.
Another large, expressive panel. Possibly the work of a single shaman.
Each symbol held a meaning for the shaman. Something they saw, experienced while in a trance.
High on a rock face, these symbols may represent multiple spirit journeys.
Higher up, with limited room to sit or recline while carving, another shaman vision panel.
This panel is particularly interesting as it features a pair of stylized bear paws at right.
Note: At no time do I touch or tread upon petroglyphs. I use a variety of telephoto lens to capture images.  
At the upper edge, a set of stylized bear paws with a coiled snake symbol directly below.
Each of these petroglyphs has a meaning. The stylized atlatl helps date these petroglyphs to +/- 1,500 years.
Chidago is one of four petroglyph sites in the Fish Slough area.
Follow these links to see sites closeby: Kitchen Rock, Red Canyon, Chalfant
For more information visit:   Fish Slough Area of Critical Environmental Concern
Recommended reading:
"A Guide to Rock Art Sites in Southern California and Southern Nevada" by David S. Whitney
and "Coso Rock Art, a New Perspective" by Elva Younkin
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