Martian Landscapes, Captain Kirk, Cowboys, Petroglyphs, and More
You can travel less than an hour north of Las Vegas and you will find a place that might convince you that you have left the planet. It is actually the oldest state park in Nevada, established in 1935. It is named Valley of Fire.
It gets its name from its incredible red sandstone and sand dunes that lace its 35,000 acres. The unique landscape makes it perfect for movies or television programs that needs a setting that looks like Mars.
One movie that Trekkies will remember is Star Trek Generations in 1994. Part of this movie was filmed here. The Professionals, a western, was also filmed in Valley of Fire.
In addition an episode of the television series Airwolf was shot on location here. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Total Recall was another popular film that used this unique place.
There is real history here, too. The petroglyphs and pictographs, engravings and paintings, were put on the rock faces in the Valley of Fire by ancient native people who lived in the area. A petroglyph is a carving in the rock while a pictograph is a painting on the rock. Most of these are found in Petroglyph Canyon within the Valley of Fire.
According to deathvalleyjim.com:
The Gypsum People were the first known inhabitants of Valley of Fire, they visited here 4000-1800 years ago (2000 B.C.-200 A. D.). They were nomadic hunter-gather people. It is believed that these people didn’t live in the Valley of Fire, but rather traveled here for ceremonial and religious purposes.
Later groups of native people who would spend time in and around the Valley of Fire include the Basket Makers, the Anasazi Pueblo People that farmed in nearby Moapa Valley, and later in historic times, the Southern Paiute.
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