VIDEO: Prehistoric Art Of Panther Cave Reproduced In 3D

Panther Cave in Seminole Canyon, Texas, has some of the country’s best-preserved prehistoric cave paintings. A colorful frieze of leaping panthers, feathered shamans and strange abstract shapes have puzzled researchers for decades. It appears to be telling a story of some sort, but what does that story say?

Now this new 3D video allows you to study it for yourself. Color enhancement brings out details hard to see with the naked eye. It also brings the cave (really a rock shelter) to the general public. Panther Cave is only visible from the opposite bank of the river or by a specially scheduled boat trip with a park ranger.

The paintings date to the Archaic period, a vague label stretching from 7,000 B.C. to 600 A.D. Judging from the condition of the paintings and the relatively shallow depth of the rock shelter, this former archaeologist thinks they must date to the last few centuries of that period. Take that with a grain of salt; my specialty was the Anglo-Saxon migration period.

The site is managed by Seminole Canyon State Park & Historic Site and Amistad National Recreation Area. Sadly, Past Horizons reports that the site is now endangered by flooding related to the construction of Amistad Reservoir. As prehistoric art across the nation falls prey to “development,” vandalism and time, these detailed videos become important records of our past.

For a look at some cave paintings from the opposite side of the globe, check out my post on the painted caves of Laas Geel in Somaliland.

Video: Holiday Greetings From The National Park Service

The National Park Service has released a fun little video to wish us all a happy holiday season and of course issue an invitation to visit them soon. No matter what time of year it is, the parks represent some of the best travel experiences anywhere, and we’re reminded of that as the video bounces around to at least a dozen national parks and monuments across the U.S. Chances are, no matter where you go for the holidays, there is a national park not far away. So, if you find yourself with a little extra time on your hands, and feel the need to get outside, look for a national park near by. I’m sure you won’t regret it.