Little Blair Valley in the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is a popular "dark sky" site for many astronomy clubs. We were going to take part in some sky watching Saturday night, and then explore the pictograph boulder east of the valley the next morning. However, the same clouds that made for such a great sunset also made for lousy astronomical viewing. At least we got lots of sleep! The next morning we followed the directions in David Whitley's A Guide to Rock Art Sites: Southern California and Southern Nevada, to lead us to the trailhead for the hike to the pictographs. This is a very scenic, albeit short, hike into a little valley. The large boulder stands aloof to the side of the trail. Whitley tells us that the red pictographs found here were part of the Kumeyaay girls' puberty initiation. Since the rattlesnake spirit helper was particularly appropriate for the girls, the zigzag and diamond-chain motifs are the most common ones at the site.
We then continued down the wash to the Smuggler Cove village site and the steep drop-off just beyond it. Here we found numerous morteros as well as some pottery pieces, indicating sustained activity over a long period of time. Some of those morteros were quite deep. Remember, take only pictures. This is a great spot for a hike, we enjoyed ourselves and returned to the car feeling refreshed. So, what will you see there? Click on the link below to find out!