May is Archeology month, and today Great Basin National Park had some special events, with archeologists from the park, BLM, and US Forest Service. We headed out there to participate. The first thing we tried out was grinding corn with a mano and matate. Desert Boy liked doing that.
Of course if big brother does it, little Miss Emma has to give it a try. She did better than I expected.
She even managed to not drop the rock on her foot, so that was definitely a good thing.
Meanwhile Desert Boy went to the rock art station. He was delighted to get a paper bag and put his name on it so that he could keep all his projects in one place. He loves doing little activities, so he had a super time.
Nicole was at the twig art station. (It was called something else, but I can't remember the correct name!)
Folks could make figurines with pipe cleaners (what we did) or with willow twigs (the more advanced skill that these guys did).
Desert Boy had moved on to the tin-can making station. He just couldn't resist drawing railroad tracks on his can.
This station included glue, so it made it extra fun.
Some other folks were learning how to make cordage.
Desert Boy went on to the clay figurine station. Karla showed him step by step how to make a clay figurine.
Can you tell which one is Desert Boy's?
(Hint: It's the one wearing the sock dress, whatever that is.)
Then Desert Boy's friend Charlie arrived, and they did some grinding together.
Then it was time to make clay bowls. I was impressed with how many different stations were at the event. Everyone was super patient, even with rambunctious kids!
Thanks so much, archeologists!
The day wasn't over yet, though. Next we went to the Baker Archeological Site and learned how to throw atlatls.
It's really fun!
Sam was a natural. He figured it out faster than me.
Where did it go?
They had an afternoon field trip to a rock shelter that I wanted to go to, but the approaching storm clouds deterred us.
Instead the kids had fun playing, picnicking, and walking around the Baker Archeological Site. I had to try using the atlatl again, too. I'd need a lot of practice before I could even touch an animal I wanted to hunt!
It was a great way to spend part of the day. We'll look forward to Archeology Day next May!
Hi! I'm Gretchen, an ecologist, rancher's wife, mother, writer, and dreamer. I've lived and worked in three of the four North American deserts and visited the fourth. This blog is about what it's like to live in the rural high desert on a ranch, spending lots of time outdoors with kids, and our journey to live more sustainably. To learn more about us, click here. If you'd like to contact me, leave a comment (I love comments!) or email me at desertsurvivor @ live.com.
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