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Petroglyph National Monument
IUCN Category III (Natural Monument)
Location Bernalillo County, New Mexico, USA
Nearest city Albuquerque, NM
Coordinates 35°8′9″N 106°45′43″W / 35.13583°N 106.76194°W / 35.13583; -106.76194Coordinates: 35°8′9″N 106°45′43″W / 35.13583°N 106.76194°W / 35.13583; -106.76194
Area 7,236 (29.28 km²)
Established June 27, 1990
Visitors 97,423 (in 2004)
Governing body National Park Service
Visitor center entrance sign

Petroglyph National Monument stretches 17 miles (27 km) along Albuquerque, New Mexico's West Mesa, a volcanic basalt escarpment that dominates the city’s western horizon. Authorized June 27, 1990, the 7,236 acre (29.28 km²) monument is cooperatively managed by the National Park Service and the City of Albuquerque. The western boundary of the monument features a chain of dormant fissure volcanoes. Beginning in the northwest corner, Butte volcano is followed to its south by Bond, Vulcan, Black and JA volcanoes.

JA Volcano, as seen from its western flank, at Petroglyph National Monument in New Mexico

Petroglyph National Monument protects a variety of cultural and natural resources including five volcanic cones, hundreds of archeological sites and an estimated 25,000 images carved by Ancestrial Pueblo peoples and early Spanish settlers. Many of the images are recognizable as animals, people, brands and crosses; others are more complex. Their meaning was, possibly, understood only by the carver. These images are the cultural heritage of a people who have long since moved into other areas and moved on through history for a multitude of interior and exterior socio-cultural explanations. The monument is intended as a protection for these lands and sites from and for visitors to see and appreciate for generations to come. The National Monument is managed in a manner that allows recreational use.

Petroglyphs on a large rock at Petroglyph National Monument


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