- Important Information
- Tour Dates
- Inappropriate Footwear
- Appropriate Footwear
- Schools & Special Tours
In the canyons and plateaus of the Coso Mountains are thousands of images left by the hunter-gatherer people who populated this region in times past. The images, called petroglyphs, are carved into basalt rocks, and range in age from Paleoindian times to the present. This is the largest known concentration of petroglyphs in the western hemisphere and is located on the Naval Air Weapons Station, China Lake. Public access is permitted to the petroglyphs that are located in lower Renegade Canyon (also known as Little Petroglyph Canyon). Access is limited to tours with Navy-approved guides. People interested in visiting the petroglyphs can take museum-sponsored tours during the Spring and Fall months. Individual dates are announced on the Maturango Museum website.
Because the tour is on an active Navy base, all persons on the tour must follow Navy rules.
- All visitors must be US citizens.
- All visitors must be over 10 years of age. No pets.
- Visitors must be in good physical condition.
- The petroglyphs are in a desert mountain canyon. The ground is uneven sand and rock, temperatures are extremely variable, water is essential.
- Dress appropriately, no open-toed shoes.
- Bring required documents including valid vehicle registration and insurance. Your vehicle will be inspected on the base.
Please download and complete BOTH the Petroglyph Application by clicking on the ‘Application for Petroglyph Tours’ photo along with the SECNAV Form, NAWS PAO by clicking on the ‘ECNAV Form, NAWS PAO’ photo. Both form sMUST be completed and returned. The Navy’s Department of Security now requires this form ‘ECNAV Form, NAWS PAO’ to be completed and signed by every person age 16 and over going on a Petroglyph Tour on the Naval Air Weapons Station, China Lake, as of September 5, 2014. This is basically an application for a temporary permit for access to NAWC during the day of your petroglyph tour. Thank you. The ECNAV Form, NAWS PAO form will ONLY open in the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader. To download or upgrade, please go to http://get.adobe.com/reader/.
Inappropriate Footwear for Petroglyph Tours
Tours Dates and Information will be available August 15th.
Petroglyph Tours cost $45 for museum members and $55 for nonmembers. The museum provides experienced, trained tour guides. Please:
- Read all the information
- Download the forms (Application and SECNAV Form, NAWS PAO using ONLY Adobe Acrobat Reader.
- Follow the directions to submit the form with payment to the Maturango Museum
Petroglyph Tour Procedures
Please download and complete the Petroglyph Application (5 pages) by clicking on the ‘Application for Petroglyph Tours‘ photo (below left). The last three pages of the ‘Application for Petroglyph Tours‘ which contains SECNAV Form, NAWS PAO can be completed in Adobe Acrobat reader by clicking on the ‘SECNAV Form, NAWS PAO – Fill-in Enabled’ link. This form will ONLY open in the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader. To download or upgrade, please go to http://get.adobe.com/reader/. The Navy’s Department of Security now requires this form ‘SECNAV Form, NAWS PAO’ to be completed and signed by every person age 18 and over going on a Petroglyph Tour on the Naval Air Weapons Station, China Lake, as of September 5, 2014. This is basically an application for a temporary permit for access to NAWC during the day of your petroglyph tour. Thank you.
Petroglyph Tour Photos
Petroglyph Tour Guides Appreciation Event, Feb. 08, 2015
Petroglyph Park Photos (located one block from the Maturango Museum)
The mission of the Maturango Museum is to preserve, interpret, and develop an appreciation for the natural and cultural history of the Northern Mojave Desert through research and education in the natural and physical sciences, and to promote the arts.
Featured Artist Interviews
100 East Las Flores Ave
Ridgecrest, CA 93555
760-375-6900 | FAX 760-375-0479
Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm
(Excluding Major Holiday)