Pictograph Ledge

Pictograph Ledge

The rock art sites in the area surrounding the Las Vegas Valley were located along prehistoric game trails leading to water holes, near hunting blinds, or in narrow gorges where game could be ambushed. This rare site may have involved rituals, centered on pictograph-making in association with seasonal food-gathering or agave-roasting. These lizard-like designs, anthropomorphic figures, meandering lines, “rainfall” patterns, and other motifs are multi-colored: red, yellow, blue, black, and white. The red pigment was made from iron oxide hematite; yellow from another iron oxide, limonite; white from the chalky deposits of gypsum and kaolin; and blue probably from desert copper ores. The black pigment may be manganese or charcoal. This project was completed with Alana Woody, who wrote the description. This is dedicated to her memory.


The close up view was made by blending sections of the pictographs, photographed separately, into one composite image.

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