Cary Ranch Pictographs

A few years ago, my friend Rick and I were invited out by Dick Cary to visit his historic Cary Ranch and examine some of the pictographs there. The ranch area was first inhabited by the Mountain Cahuilla indians. The site is near a natural pass and an old indian trail that connects inland Southern California shrub lands to Anza Borrego country of the Sonoran Desert.

This pass (called San Carlos Pass) was used by both the 1774 and 1775 Juan Bautista de Anza expeditions to Alta California (as it was known then). They camped at least once on what is today the ranch site. If you look carefully in one of the rock shelters, you might spot a pictograph of a rider on horseback. This could represent the de Anza expedition passing through. Seeing a horse, not to mention a white man on horseback, would have been quite a sight to the Cahuilla at the time.

Mr. Cary was an extremely generous host. I thank him for letting us visit and giving us a great tour.

Cary Ranch is private property and a private residence. Someone is always on-site. Please respect and don’t trespass.

I meet up with ranch owner Dick Cary and my buddy Rick to hike up to the pictograph sites. I meet up with ranch...
Hiking Hiking
This old wagon dates from the 1800s. This old wagon dates...
Mr. Cary shows us a few shallow mortars hidden in the boulders. Mr. Cary shows us a ...
And a faint pictograph. And a faint pictograph.
We find a grinding slick in the boulders. We find a grinding s...
Mr. Cary leads us to another rock shelter with more faint pictographs. Mr. Cary leads us to...
There they are There they are
Black pictographs Black pictographs
Roaming around the Cary property. Roaming around the C...
He shows us more mortars on his property. He shows us more mor...
This mortar site has a good view. This mortar site has...
Mr. Cary tells us about how the Natives travelled through his ranch before leading us to an impressive shelter. Mr. Cary tells us ab...
Wow Wow
There are some amazing pictographs on this ceiling of this shelter. There are some amazi...
Some of the pictographs have been chalked. Some of the pictogra...
Note the mounted rider in the lower right. This was likely made after the de Anza expedition came through. Note the mounted rid...
Could some of these be Spanish symbols? Could some of these ...
These are very interesting. These are very inter...
Anthropormorph Anthropormorph
Complex symbols Complex symbols
This almost looks like a map. This almost looks li...
I turned upside down to get this shot. I turned upside down...
We head over to another shelter. We head over to anot...
Some very faint pictographs here. Some very faint pict...
These are hard to make out. These are hard to ma...
Faded away Faded away
As are these As are these
This looks like a nest. It could be celestial. This looks like a ne...
Man? Man?
Spoked wheel Spoked wheel
More faded ones More faded ones
Human figures Human figures
Cross Cross
We climbing higher. We climbing higher.
More faint black pictographs in another shelter. More faint black pic...
Interesting Interesting
Faint cross-hatching Faint cross-hatching
At another shelter, we find some red pictographs. At another shelter, ...
Red counting marks Red counting marks
Hard to see Hard to see
Net like maze Net like maze
D-Stretched image of the maze. Image courtesy of Mr. Dick Cary. D-Stretched image of...
I notice a couple of pieces of pottery. I notice a couple of...
Pottery sherd. Pottery sherd.
More bedrock mortars More bedrock mortars
Another mortar Another mortar
A deep mortar A deep mortar
Strange how this mortar is all by itself. Strange how this mor...
Another piece of pottery Another piece of pot...
I spot what could be a "yoni". I spot what could be...
It looks like it could have been carved out. It looks like it cou...
There is more than a dozen more mortars up here. This was a popular spot! There is more than a...
Inside the ranch house, Mr. Cary has brought out his amazing collection of ollas and artifacts found on his property. Inside the ranch hou...
Manos and metates for grinding Manos and metates fo...
Can you guess what this is? It's a tire lock for early cars! It dates from 1914. Can you guess what t...
Arrow straightener Arrow straightener
"Gus Adams, August 1897" "Gus Adams, Aug...
These were all found on-site. These were all found...
This is a photo of Fred Clark who bought the ranch from the Native Cahuilla Indians and also accompanied Bolton while he was doing research for his five volumes on de Anza.  Image courtesy of Mr. Dick Cary. This is a photo of F...

 


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