After yesterday’s surprise Equinox find I got the fever. I resisted my comfy pillow and went back before dawn today to see the sunrise from the sunrise observatory.

I recorded today’s sunrise then using my archaeoastronomy app plotted where the sun would have risen over the landmarks visible from the observatory platform circa the year 1700, in the final years before Spanish enslavement of local natives.


I was thrilled to see that the Autumn Equinox plotted exactly where I thought it would when I found the notch yesterday.

The observatory notch lined up with the notch on the distant ridge.
The same alignment at sunrise in Autumn Equinox circa 1700 CE

Isn’t that cool!

Here are some other alignments from the observatory.

Summer Solstice
Spring Equinox

And the Winter Solstice aligns with a valley that serves as a pass from the Los Angeles basin below to this high place that is suspected to be a native cemetery. That is poignant because the Winter Solstice is associated with a time of death.

Winter Solstice

I repeated yesterdays meditation on the observatory platform. What a perfect place to meditate. I imagine people have spent a lot of time doing so on this rock.

Sitting on the observatory platform with the giant fin facing the sun at my back.


I began to leave then as an after thought decided to climb up on top of the fin to see the view from up there. Surprise! That’s where the smoking gun was. If I’d doubted that I’d found a sacred space, my doubts fled when I saw two boulders covered with ceremonial cupule petroglyphs. The boulders were on a large flat place on top of the fin.

Cupule Petroglyphs
Cupule Petroglyphs

Sandstone erodes in little pockets like this, but these were not smooth eroded pockets. They were hard pecked holes into the varnish of the rock, some of which had eroded smooth sections.

I had noticed and photographed this chiseled arrow (below) at the observatory platform, but wasn’t sure how seriously to take it given the absence of any other petroglyphs. It was on a low rock and pointed toward the platform itself.

Carved arrow pointing toward the platform

That arrow took on new meaning after seeing the cupules on what I can only assume was a ceremonial space above.


I looked around a little more, but had to bail out. My kids were waiting at home for me to take them to watch dad play baseball. His team won ūü§ó

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