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Visit with Respect Blog

Exploring Bears Ears: How to Visit with Respect

Guest blog by Ana Siegel,  Friends of Cedar Mesa

In Bears Ears National Monument, evidence of those who once inhabited the vast canyons and mesa-tops is everywhere: there are more than 100,000 documented cultural sites within the monument’s boundaries, making the region one of the most extensive archeological areas on earth.  Petroglyphs, pottery sherds, ancestral cliff dwellings and structures remind visitors of not only those who walked these lands before us, but the sanctity of this living, cultural landscape.

As visitors to this landscape, it is our responsibility to preserve these cultural sites both out of respect to the region’s Tribes and Pueblos, who trace their ancestry here, and for all visitors who come next. To ensure the protection of this landscape and all that it holds, we must learn to Visit with Respect.

Visitors can learn to protect both the landscape and cultural sites by visiting the Bears Ears Education Center in Bluff, the Bears Ears Education Center website, or by scrolling below for some tips and videos on how to Visit with Respect!

Enjoy your time at Bears Ears National Monument, and thank you for Visiting with Respect!

View Sites from a Distance

VIEW SITES FROM A DISTANCE:  

Many Indigenous peoples consider this landscape sacred.

DON’T TOUCH ROCK IMAGERY OR MAKE YOUR OWN: 

Vandalism of petroglyphs and pictographs erases stories of ancient people and destroys the experience for future visitors.

STEER CLEAR OF WALLS:

Structures are easily damaged.  Please refrain from touching, leaning, standing, or climbing on any structures.

STAY ON DESIGNATED TRAILS:

Use existing roads that are approved for use by land managers.  Driving off-road can damage fragile archaeology and ecosystems.