Hunting Magic Panel

Round Trip Distance: 3.5 - 4.4 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation: 5742 - 5947 feet
Cellphone: 0 bars
Time: 2 hrs.
Trailhead: E22 Road & Highway 90
Fee: none
Attractions: Petroglyphs, rock shelters

The Hunting Magic Panel is one of the stops in the Paradox Valley Petroglyph Tour pamphlet that they hand out at the Naturita Information Center. The site is located in the Paradox Valley between the towns of Paradox and Naturita, Colorado.

To get there find your way to the junction of Highway 141 and Highway 90. Follow Highway 90 for just under 5 miles toward Bedrock and turn left onto EE 22 Road.

After turning off of the highway EE 22 Road passes through 2 gates within the first half mile. Leave each gate the way that you find it. If you have one of the pamphlets from the Naturita Information Center it mentions taking the first double track to the left after passing through the second gate. We are suggesting that it isn't the track immediately after the gate but one that is another quarter mile or so from there.

There is a 4wd road that runs along the contours of the hills to the east of EE 22 Road. The Hunting Magic Panel is on a boulder that is just a few yards from the 4wd road. The easiest route to get there is via a double track that is about 3 quarters of a mile from the highway that arcs around in that direction.

During good dry conditions a careful driver in a 2wd vehicle can make it within about 3 tenths of a mile of the site where they can park and hike the rest of the distance. As you hike you might notice there is a large amount of elk and deer skat in the area which would make it a good area to hunt even today.

The location is marked with a BLM brown carsonite 'Site Etiquette' marker. The petroglyphs are on the lower left hand side of a large boulder.

Many of the petroglyphs are still in really good shape. An interesting depiction is that of a bear paw that has a line of extra toes that connect it to one of the fingers of a pair of hands. To the left of the hands is what looks like a crane.

You might also note that the hands each have 6 fingers which is something that you see from time to time at other sites.

Below the bear paw is what looks like an image of a buffalo which also turns up at other locations.

Hiking around amongst the boulders reveals a few rock shelters that show signs of habitation. A little past the Hunting Magic Panel on the west side of the road is one that is marked with a brown carsonite post that has a couple of pictographs inside.

The rock shelter even has a window that has one heck of a nice view of the La Sal Mountains just across the border in Utah. It makes quite the prehistoric 'picture window'.

When we visited the Hunting Magic Panel to take the photos for this post we drove the first 2 miles and then parked and hiked the rest of the way spending quite a bit of time crawling around amongst the boulders. After that we returned to our truck and decided to drive the 4wd road so that we could add it to our map. The road gets very rough in places and we did have to put the truck in 4 wheel high to make it through. The 4wd road is 1.2 miles one-way so it is also a good option for hiking or mountain biking. Those like us that enjoy visiting rock art sites and comparing the images and their style to other places they have been to will find that the Hunting Magic Panel is well worth the time and effort. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.