Petroglyph Patrol by Tim O’Brien
The Petroglyph Patrol is a rock art stewardship program initiated by Southwest Utah National Conservation Lands Friends (SUNCLF) in partnership with the BLM St. George Field Office. Trained volunteers monitor visitor activities at the Land Hill Heritage Site in the Santa Clara River Reserve, sharing tips on respectful visiting.
Volunteers attend a day-long orientation and training session conducted by BLM Archaeologist Lori Hunsaker. Patrol members work in pairs and schedule two to four-hour patrol walks, helping to ensure proper petroglyph viewing etiquette and reporting vandalism and disruptive behavior to appropriate authorities. Volunteers carry Protect and Respect rack cards with site viewing etiquette bullet points that serve as a conversation starter with visitors.
Patrol members have made several suggestions to help ensure petroglyph preservation:
- Request that local hiking clubs ask their members not to walk on these often hard to see rock-top petroglyphs.
- Establish a disciplined patrol schedule to ensure patrol coverage at busier times, such as weekends and holidays.
We are in need of more volunteers and will be scheduling more orientation sessions. Please consider joining the patrol to assist in preserving this archaeological treasure. It is our hope that the patrol will be expanded to cover other petroglyph sites once we firmly establish the patrol process at Land Hill.
These rock art sites are fragile, non-renewable historic resources that once damaged cannot be repaired or replaced. Please help us preserve this rich cultural landscape for generations to come.