Plateau on the Radio: Episode 24 Rock Art of the Plateau

Listen to Episode 24 HERE...

Look closely in many places on the Plateau and it is almost inevitable that you will find at least one piece of rock art. From the smallest spiral tucked away somewhere to whole panels of petroglyphs and pictographs, sometimes along a canyon wall for as far as you can see.

San Juan Anthropomorphs which date to the Basketmaker II Period
 - Bears Ears National Monument, UT.
Photo by Alan Kressler

Our great guest interview this week is with archaeologist Michael Terlep who extensively studied the enigmatic cup and channel petroglyphs of the Arizona Strip and Grand Staircase-Escalante. Michael shares with us the idea of Landscape Theory, the importance of working with the Nations of the Plateau to bring about a complete understanding of rock art, and some great places on the Plateau to go gaze at rock art and let your mind wander to ancient times.

One of the many Cup and Channel Petroglyphs.

An enhanced version of the debated Mammoth petroglyph at Upper
Sand Island, UT, that Michael Terlep mentioned.
Enhanced photo by Ekkehart Malotki
Also on the show: The importance of peer-review, Notes from the Field all about a new dinosaur species discovered on the Plateau and myths surrounding rattlesnakes, and an Audio Postcard from the Plateau by contributor Ashley Doyle.

Check out some of archaeologist Michael Terlep's amazing research below:

Water, Pitch, and Prehistoric Indexes: An Analysis of Cup and Channel Petroglyphs (Terlep, 2013. American Indian Rock Art, Volume 39, 2013)

From the Canyon to the Staircase: Expanding the Paleolithic Presence in the Arizona Strip (Bryce and Terlep, 2017)

Archaeological and Historical Survey of Ebon Atoll, Republic of the Marshall Islands (Terlep, 2013)

Plateau on the Radio: Episode 23 The Monsoon

Listen to Episode 23 HERE...

In this special edition of your favorite regional science hour we dive into the most beautiful time of year on the Plateau...the Monsoon Season.

White Pockets area on the AZ/UT border after a nice rain storm.
Photo by Ryan Lima.

Join me as we learn about the origin of the name Monsoon and how this annual weather pattern develops. We also explore the ancient life within desert potholes, or ephemeral pools that fill up during this magical time of year and have living fossils existing within. And finally we talk about being safe out there in the wilds as you are exploring the Plateau region, and how to best avoid flash floods and lightning strikes, and so much more.

Also, regional music from New Mexico with Native Roots, and from Hopi with Casper Lomayesva and friends.

Below is a footage of a flash flood at Lower Antelope Canyon on the Diné Nation from 2013. In some areas this portion of the slot canyon is 40 feet deep.

Plateau on the Radio: Episode 22 Wild Horses on the Plateau

Listen to Episode 22 HERE...

Photograph by Jay Mark Redelsperger

This week brings us out to the high deserts of the Colorado Plateau where the wild horses of the Diné Nation struggle to survive during this seemingly unending drought. But there is always hope when things seem the darkest, and a grassroots effort started by local folks in Gray Mountain and Flagstaff called Gray Mountain Horse Heroes has stepped up to help the horses in any way they can. We interview four of the Horse Heroes, Paul Lincoln, Glenda Seweingyawma, Eileen Taggart and Billie McGraw on the origin of their meeting, the difficulties and joys of helping so many horses in the area, and ways in which we all can help too. The efforts of this group have not only been healing the horses, but also has been bringing the community of Gray Mountain and the surrounding area together.
From Left to Right: Emery, Paul and Glenda

Also, a history of horses in North America, and music by Sihasin as well as John Trudell and Annie Humphrey.

Further Information:

Please consider joining the Facebook Group: Gray Mountain Horse Heroes to join in the efforts.

If you would like to donate monetarily to the group you can do so at Wildhorse Ranch Rescue, or by purchasing gift cards for the group at Olsen's Grain in Flagstaff for hay and feed.

A recent article by Emery Cowan about the efforts at Gray Mountain: In the midst of drought, volunteers bring food and water to Gray Mountain wild horses

Check out the report mentioned in the show by the Navajo Nation Department of Fish and Wildlife titled Survey of Free Ranging Horses on the Navajo Nation

Special thanks to Glenda Seweingyawma and Jay Mark Redelsperger for the use of their photos. And special thanks to Environmental and Science Reporter Emery Cowan of the Arizona Daily Sun for helping to make this episode happen.

Plateau on the Radio: Episode 21 Foraging the Colorado Plateau with Ashley Doyle

Listen to Episode 21 HERE...

This week your regular humble host, Christopher Calvo took a backseat as guest host extraordinaire, master chef and nutritionist Ashley Doyle took us on a journey through the Plateau to forage for wild and delicious foods, dyes and medicine too.

Guest host and Plateau forager Ashley Doyle
From the gathering of Dandelions on many riparian throughout the Plateau, to Lobster and King Bolete mushrooms in the monsoon drenched slopes of the San Francisco Peaks, to cooking with Amaranth in Ashley's kitchen out in the volcanic fields of northern Arizona, to Biscuit Root in the Canyon Country of Utah. Ashley also walks you through how to make simple tinctures and vinegars with your harvest utilizing things that are probably already in your kitchen right now. This will be a seasonal series on the radio show so please get in touch with Ashley at or on the Facebook page and let her know your favorite foods to forage in your neck of the woods and your favorite recipes too.

Ashley harvesting the fruit of the
Prickly Pear in northern AZ.
For other great resources in harvesting foods on the Plateau check out the following links:
And to get involved with some classes that focus on wild food, look into the wonderful Forager's Path School of Botanical Studies.