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May 13, 2022 – May 16, 2022 all-day
Depart from SAR
660 Garcia St
Santa Fe, NM 87505
Amy Schiffer

A Snapshot of Bears Ears: Culture, Rock Art, and Exploring

DATES: May 13-16, 2022

Photo courtesy of Carol B. Patterson.

Cost per person:
Double Occupancy: $2,300 (Includes a $100 non-refundable tax-deductible donation to SAR)
Single Occupancy: $2,500 (Includes a $100 non-refundable tax-deductible donation to SAR)


Field trip limited to 12 participants.
Priority is given to Galisteo members and up.

Join the School for Advanced Research on a special trip to Bears Ears National Monument. The Bears Ears area of southeastern Utah contains thousands of sacred cultural site and is an important area of spiritual significance for many of the tribes who live in the Southwest today. Some of the ancestors of those tribal groups gathered here for thousands of years, leaving marks on the rock. These images relate to ancestors, prayers, creation stories, success in hunting, and celebration. Many of these images date back as far as Basketmaker II (550 BC to 750), and include Pueblo III (1150 to 1350), Keresan, Zuni, Navajo, and Ute images. They are located on overhangs and cliff walls of the Navajo sandstone. We will visit some of the best known sites, but the whole area is rich with rock art, both painted and picked.

There are thousands of petroglyph and pictograph panels on the walls of remote canyons. Some of these images are dated as far back as 12,000 BP, but most are around 700 years old. There are more than 10,000 archeological and cultural sites documented in the region. Today the surrounding area adjacent to the Bears Ears is occupied by the Dine’ (Navajo), and Ute Mountain Ute, who hold this land to be scared. In addition the Bears Ears is held sacred by the Hopi and Zuni tribes as well as by other tribal nations.

We will stay at Recapture Lodge (a favorite of Tony Hillerman) for the entire trip, so you can unpack your bags and relax. Breakfasts and dinners will be in Bluff and lunches will be packed and on the go.


Photo courtesy of Carol B. Patterson.

Carol B. Patterson, PhD, a Colorado native, has a BA from the University of New Mexico, an MA from Columbia Pacific University, and her PhD in rock art from James Cook University, Australia. She was an adjunct professor of cultural anthropology at Metropolitan State College in Denver, and Colorado Mesa University at the Montrose and Grand Junction campuses. She was employed as a G11 field archaeologist at the Uncompahgre Field Office of the BLM in Colorado for 5 years. Her company of 15 years, Urraca Archaeological Services, specializes in rock art documentation and reevaluation projects. Carol has published several books and journal articles including On the Trail of Spider Woman, Ancient City Press, Santa Fe, 1997 and Petroglyphs of Western Colorado and the Northern Ute Indian Reservation as Interpreted by Clifford Duncan, American Philosophical Society Press, 2016, her most recent. Through her work in the Bears Ears National Monument, she has produced three articles on the Keres, Zuni and Hopi petroglyphs, in the international publication “Expressions” Vol. 22, 25, and 26.  She resides in Bluff, Utah.




Rebecca (Becky) Hammond (A.F.A., Fine Arts, Institute of American Indian Arts) joined Crow Canyon as an educator in 1997. In the years since, she has taught participants of all ages in many different kinds of programs, including school programs, teen camps, and adult travel programs. As a member of the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, she brings an American Indian perspective. In addition to being a teacher, she is also a bead artist. Taught by her grandmother in traditional beading techniques, she enjoys drawing on both traditional Ute and Ancestral Pueblo designs to create her own style



Activity Level: Moderate to Strenuous. Lots of walking, standing for long periods, and hikes with a few steeper inclines/declines.

Includes: Transportation in air-conditioned coach with a bathroom; water and snacks; room for 3 nights; guides, entry fees, and gratuities. Meals will be provided unless otherwise noted on the itinerary.

Basic Itinerary:

May 13, Friday Depart SAR Lunch stop at Lescombes Winery in Farmington
Stop at Edge of the Cedars for short tourArrive in Bluff, and check into Recapture Lodge
Dinner at the Cottonwoord Steakhouse and relax

May 14, SaturdayContinental breakfast at Recapture LodgeHOUSE OF FIRE AND CAVE TOWERS9:00 am Pick up group at Recapture Lodge. We are dividing the group into 2 because the vehicles are small and permits do not allow for a large group        Group 1 House of Fire         Group 2 Cave Towers OverlookNoon: Both groups meet for Lunch at Arch Canyon Overlook1:00 pm, Afternoon hike         Group 1 Cave Towers Overlook        Group 2 House of Fire4:30 pm Return to Bluff6:00  pm  Dinner at Comb Bistro8:00 pm   Lecture at Recapture by Becky Hammond, Ute cultural historianMay 15, Sunday Continental Breakfast at RecaptureRIVER HOUSE AND BIG KACHINA PANEL9:00 am Pick up at RecaptureFull group tour to River House Ruin and Big Kachina PanelLunch 1:00 pm Afternoon hike        Group 1: Monarch Cave        Group 2 Double stack RuinsReturn to Recapture6:00 pm Dinner (TBD)8:00 pm   Lecture by Carol Patterson on possible significance of some of the imagesMay 16, Monday Continental Breakfast at Recapture 9:00 am Pick up at Recapture for hikes        Group 1 Double Stack Ruins        Group 2 Monarch CaveCheck out of Recapture 1:00 pm   Bus back to Santa Fe with boxed lunch


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