Spilling the Beans on Rock Art

SKLund

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I like to find it myself. The research, the talking to locals, the coming up empty, are all just dandy for me. When you close in on the goal, it makes it that much better. After all, you see a lot of neat stuff out there while you were looking for something else. I had spent years trying to find "The Hitchhiker" when I find out that Kelsey gave it away in his latest ..."Exploring Canyonlands National Park" edition. It's on the cover no less!

I'm all for freedom of speech and all the constitutional but it riles me when someone publishes on the Interweb or in written material the exact location of these precious and rare resources. Recently I found the location of a Barrier Canyon site I was looking for in the wrong way. Oh great, how long before you see bullet holes or tags on it. I hope it isn't messed up before I get there or after. If you care any more about it, it's name is "Unexpected Panel".

I wish people would exercise better judgement.
 

Rockskipper

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It seems like rock art is like everything else that's precious, the more people that know about it, the more likely someone is going to damage it. I have mixed feelings, because I think it's cool when someone tells me where a panel is, but there's something even better about finding it for yourself. I've "found" a lot of panels just wandering, but there are also a lot that I would never have seen if someone hadn't pointed me their way. As for Kelsey, he's probably spilled the beans on more rock art then everyone else put together.
 
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Nick

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Kelsey has been publishing whatever he wants for decades. Not to defend his actions, but this thread is probably shining more of a light on this specific panel than some obscure piece of a Kelsey book. I mean seriously, have you read one?
 
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Rockskipper

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It's been popular to hate on Kelsey for years. Even a lot of the BLM rangers will tell you he's gotten people into trouble (especially regarding the Black Box), but my philosophy on it is that you go of your own free will, and if you're relying on one source for information and have no common sense, then you can't really blame Kelsey or any guidebook. In the grand scheme of things, most people don't even know who Kelsey is. But he does reveal where rock art is, though I was exaggerating when I said maybe more than everyone else put together. What he does is show you how to get out into all the places where the rock art is. But a book(s) that comes to mind is a series by a Utah doctor, though I can't remember what it's called as I gave my set away, but it has tons of rock art photos and tells you where they are. That group of books probably out does anything Kelsey put together, but it was done more to encourage people to preserve rock art. Not sure if that makes a difference or not.

Backpacker had an interesting article on Kelsey some years ago.

https://www.backpacker.com/trips/the-devil-wore-sneakers
 
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IntrepidXJ

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But a book(s) that comes to mind is a series by a Utah doctor, though I can't remember what it's called as I gave my set away, but it has tons of rock art photos and tells you where they are. That group of books probably out does anything Kelsey put together, but it was done more to encourage people to preserve rock art. Not sure if that makes a difference or not.

Petroglyphs and Pictographs of Utah by Castleton. Those two books have photos of a lot of rock art and give you a general idea about the locations, but they do not give directions or points on a map. Some of the sites in those two volumes are still difficult to figure out the location and if you want to find them you just have to go looking and see what you can find.
 

regehr

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But a book(s) that comes to mind is a series by a Utah doctor, though I can't remember what it's called as I gave my set away, but it has tons of rock art photos and tells you where they are.

I guess the Castleton books?
https://www.amazon.com/dp/0874808294/?tag=backcountrypo-20

I love the Kelsey books and often loan them to visitors, but I always tell people not to believe a word of the route descriptions. Obviously that's an exaggeration and I've had a ton of fun with his route but you want to have your act together, bring a real map, etc.
 

Rockskipper

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That's it, the Castleton books. It's been a long time since I've had them, so I guess my memory wasn't so good about him telling where stuff is at.

I guess the spectrum goes from one extreme to the other, from people who want to know exactly where everything is to people like the guy with the gallery in Green River who wants everyone to take their photos off Google Earth.
 

Udink

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the guy with the gallery in Green River who wants everyone to take their photos off Google Earth
Has he been publicly calling for that to happen? I got an e-mail from him a while back, he was apparently upset with all my Google Earth photos along the San Rafael Reef (though they were all just scenery, no rock art).
 

Wyatt Carson

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I guess the Castleton books?
https://www.amazon.com/dp/0874808294/?tag=backcountrypo-20

I love the Kelsey books and often loan them to visitors, but I always tell people not to believe a word of the route descriptions. Obviously that's an exaggeration and I've had a ton of fun with his route but you want to have your act together, bring a real map, etc.

You got that right. LOL Let’s just say I don’t agree with some of his navigational discriptions at all.

And once we found a great ruin through a guess but all these people started showing up. None would tell me how they knew about it until one old unassuming guy in jeans and a polo shirt said...it’s on the cover of Keksey’s new edition. LOL That old guy was really something too and had even found Cave 7 on his own from the horizon of a photograph. I love meeting strange characters out three and we have gotten several good ideas from the Kelsey books but usually do our own thing.
 

Rockskipper

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Has he been publicly calling for that to happen? I got an e-mail from him a while back, he was apparently upset with all my Google Earth photos along the San Rafael Reef (though they were all just scenery, no rock art).

I have a photographer friend who was in his gallery, and when she told him she was a photographer he started complaining about how all these "sacred" spots were becoming common knowledge because of people posting too much information on the internet, especially sites like Google Earth. I wonder if he's contacted people like Sessions and others who have tons of photos there.
 

Jackson

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Has he been publicly calling for that to happen? I got an e-mail from him a while back, he was apparently upset with all my Google Earth photos along the San Rafael Reef (though they were all just scenery, no rock art).

I have a photographer friend who was in his gallery, and when she told him she was a photographer he started complaining about how all these "sacred" spots were becoming common knowledge because of people posting too much information on the internet, especially sites like Google Earth. I wonder if he's contacted people like Sessions and others who have tons of photos there.

No worries on the Google Earth photos since Google is scuttling Panoramio November 4.

EDIT: I guess they'll keep your photos on Google Maps if you've linked your Google and Panoramio accounts together (unless you tell them not to), but it's not quite as easy or intuitive to pinpoint locations using Maps. Otherwise, everything else will be gone.
 

LarryBoy

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Kelsey's books are good for getting ideas. Then I go do actual research :)

As far as rock art goes, half the fun is finding it yourself.
 
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