Tuesday, 13 July 2004
Longest Art Gallery Threatened
CREDIT: © The National Trust/NationalTrust.org
WHERE: Duchesne, Utah. WHAT: historically & archaeological important site.
MAP: Duchesne & Nine Mile Canyon. Thumbnails  pop-up larger images.
Recent good news about the archaeological treasures of Range Creek, Utah, has been somewhat dampened by the American National Trust: just over the other side of the mountain, nearby Nine Mile Canyon has been put on the 2004 Most Endangered Historic Places list. The canyon has been called the 'world's longest art gallery' because of its ten thousand Native American rock-art images, and is threatened by plans for extensive oil and gas exploration. A ten years old BLM [Bureau of Land Management] plan for the canyon has never been implemented.
The canyon is actually forty miles long, but was possibly named after the 'Nine Mile Creek' triangulation drawing done by F.M. Bishop, a surveyor who accompanied the John Wesley Powell party. The survey report was presented to Congress, annotated with the Bishop Ridge and Nine Mile Creek names.
The oil men are not the only threat; the rising numbers of tourists visiting the location are in themselves a threat. While trying to raise awareness of the threat, warning articles also raise interest, thus compounding the problem by unintentionally increasing visitor numbers. Most ironic of all, are promoters such as NSBO [National Scenic Byways Online - a community led by the United States Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration] that encourage a wider appreciation of the heritage, there for everyone to enjoy but with the double whammy of increased gasoline consumption, and greater impact from yet more visitors.
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Jules Laforgue (1860-1887)
"Ah! que la vie est quotidienne."
Oh, what a day-to-day business life is.
'Complainte sur certains ennuis' (1885)