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Steve Davidson | profile | all galleries >> Landscapes >> The Land of Secrets >> Rock Art >> Coyote Head tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Coyote Head

This is the place of the Coyote Head Petroglyph. What it means and why it is here is a mystery, but it must have been of special importance to those who carved it.

Experts believe that spirals sometimes symbolize the sun and at least in one place in the Southwest, Chaco Canyon, one is used as a calendar. Another spiral at Beaver Creek, Arizona made by the very same Chaco Anasazi may be related to a calendar a few feet away on another separate glyph panel.

It is fairly common at rock art sites in the Southwest that there is a lone spiral glyph with more swirls than any other that is set apart from all other glyphs of the site on a rock face all its own. The reason for it is unknown. The one here is different because it has a Coyote's head at the end of the spiral.

Coyote's were revered by Native Americans and in some myths it is said that a coyote created the Earth. No other spiral at this site has more swirls in it than the Coyote Head Petroglyph. Coyotes are nocturnal and their unmistakable, mournful howl pierces the night and runs shivers up your spine when all the coyotes in the area suddenly start howling, only to fade away into silence again in a minute or so.

It probably is not by chance this rock art site faces the setting sun.

The site looks like there were glyphs influenced by Indians from southern Arizona as well as a touch of Fremont influence from the north. Look and you will find many interesting glyphs like another swirl glyph high up on the main glyph panel that has two snakes heads at its end.

This site consists of only petroglyphs, there are no pictographs.

These pictures were taken during the "golden hour" just before sunset and that hour was especially "golden" on that particular evening. The first couple show the three large rocks with the glyph panels centered and shown in their natural setting among the other rocks surrounding the site on the side of a hill. Other pictures show each of the panels and some closeups of individual glyphs.
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