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Three Rivers Petroglyphs in Las Cruces

A little bit of a drive from Hacienda RV Resort, but well-worth it to view more than 21,000 prehistoric rock-carvings at the Petroglyph Site in Three Rivers, New Mexico. You’ll find it located midway between Tularosa and Carrizozo on Highway 54. Many of the petroglyphs can be easily viewed from a trail open to the public which winds through the rocks for about a mile.

What did ancient people have in mind? Were these images depictions of their daily lives? Did they have a religious significance? Some have speculated that they were simply ‘doodles.’

The petroglyphs in Three Rivers were most probably made by the Jornada Mogollon people, most probably between 900 – 1400 AD. The exact dates are impossible to determine because carbon-dating does not work on rocks.

Las Cruces Petroglyphs | Three Rivers Petroglyphs

See Three Rivers Petroglyphs Up Close When You Visit Hacienda RV Resort

Many ancient rock-art sites are hidden from public view to protect the fragile carvings, but this is one of the few sites that gives visitors direct access to the ancient art works.

Once you arrive, a rugged half-mile trail begins at the visitor shelter and links many of the most interesting petroglyphs. Hike another short trail on the east side of the picnic area to the remains of a Mogollon pueblo, whose inhabitants were likely responsible for the etchings.

Getting There From Hacienda RV Resort

Reserve your stay at Hacienda RV Resort and give yourself an extra day to be awed and amazed by the detailed drawings of birds, humans, animals, fish, insects and plants, as well as numerous geometric and abstract designs, all scattered over 50 acres of New Mexico’s northern Chihuahuan Desert.

Driving directions to Three Rivers Petroglyphs Coming from Las Cruces:

  • Travel on Picacho Avenue-Hwy 70 to the stop light with Shalem Colony Trail.
  • Go north on Shalem Colony Trail for approximately 5.5 miles.
  • Prior to reaching the Rio Grande, you will reach Rocky Acres Trail.
  • Turn west on Rocky Acres Trail.
  • Go west approximately 1/4 mile to a dirt road entrance on the left-hand side.
  • Cross over a cattle-guard and continue to the west.
  • This road, past about a mile, is for high-clearance, 4wd vehicles only.

Take a Day Trip to Three Rivers and Take Your Camera. You Will Always Remember This Visit to Las Cruces and Hacienda RV Resort.

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