Gopher Snake
Petroglyph and Photo
April 9, 2009

Note: This is a companion page to the one showing the 2.2-meg video of a gopher snake roaming about a petryglyph site. If you wish to see the video, click here.

The incident occurred nine years ago, but makes up one of my clearer memories - of a beautiful day in the northern part of Dinosaur National Monument, Utah. Sue and I were hiking to see a particular set of petroglyphs, including a large one of a snake.

Snake petroglyph

Impressive artwork!

While we were admiring Ancient Snake, an enormous gopher snake slithered into view. The gopher snake was easily 7 feet from nose to tail and probably longer. Following is a still that shows only head and neck.


Gopher snake


So what are the odds of seeing a large petroglyph of a snake and have a large snake appear at the same time? Is it something about the area? About how the rocks and cavities are arranged? Did the original artist know that the location was a favorite one of snakes?

After the gopher snake vanished underground, I took photos of the petroglyphs (but we didn't feel like sitting on the nearby rocks). The Snake's head is visible on the left.  

Petroglyphs of a sheep, dog, and owl

So there's a terrific sheep, a dog, and perhaps an owl. Not to mention the person illustrated.

Note: The gopher snake image is a still from video taken in 2000 on an Sony digital-8 camcorder. Sorry to say I forget which camera and lens I used for the photos.  

Dinosaur National Monument   |   McConkie Ranch Petroglyphs

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