Nevada Petroglyphs Are Oldest In North America

oldest petroglyphs discovered in nevada
Larry Benson, AP

It’s been a big week for scientific discoveries in the Americas. Not only have researchers found the first carnivore species to be discovered in the Western Hemisphere in the past 35 years (bonus: it looks like a teddy bear), but news of the unearthing of the oldest recorded petroglyphs in North America has also surfaced.

Don’t know what a petroglyph is? It’s a prehistoric drawing akin to Egyptian hieroglyphs, except etched into rock. The ones found on a reservation near Pyramid Lake in Nevada date back at least 10,000 years, and depict geometric designs and patterns.

“We initially thought people 12,000 or 10,000 years ago were primitive, but their artistic expressions and technological expertise associated with these paints a much different picture,” said Eugene Hattori, the curator of anthropology at the Nevada State Museum in Carson City

Since the petroglyphs were found on tribal lands, it’s unclear whether or not travelers will be able to see them with their own eyes any time soon. For now, check out these places where you can see Native American rock art in the United States.