Pottery Shards Galore

Hi everyone,

It’s been awhile since I’ve put up a blog, but a lot has happened! I wanted to share an exciting experience I had recently. One of the opportunities that Wupatki offers are guided discovery hikes. These are back country hikes that allow for visitors to see archeological sites and petroglyphs that aren’t open to the immediate public. My mentor, Cathy, took me out to East Mesa to do one of the hikes with me, so I can see more of Wupatki.


Image of Cathy leading me during our hike


The hike we went on is East Mesa, and my favorite part of this experience was seeing all the different types of pottery shards. Because Wupatki has many cultural influences, there are many varieties of pottery you can find. There are black-on-white, black-on-red, redwares, greywares, and more. Here is a picture with multiple pottery shards on the ground. Can you find them?




These are the four pottery shards that were in the picture above. Going from left to right, there is a greyware, black-on-white, and two coiled pottery shards.




I think my favorite kind I’ve seen whilst being here are the black-on-whites. I like the stark contrast that the black paint gives on the white pottery and I also like all of the different designs. Seeing the large amount of pottery here shows how vital it was to the ancestral Pueblo life. The pottery itself can share a lot about who used it, where those people got the clay, and how they used it. People used pottery for cooking, eating, storage, ceremonies, and more.


Here are some other pictures I took of different types of pottery shards!


Image of a black-on-white pottery shard



Image of a coiled pottery shard



Image of a black-on-red pottery shard


Although there aren’t any discovery hikes going on right now due to COVID-19, I hope that you all are able to visit in the future and see how amazing it is out here. I have loved working out here and learning about the culture and history that Wupatki has to offer.

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