Reward Offered in Vandalism of Rock Art at the “First Site” in Nine Mile Canyon


The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has partnered with the Nine Mile Canyon Coalition, Castle Valley Chapter of the Utah Statewide Archaeological Society, Bill Barrett Corporation, Eastern Utah Community Credit Union, Jones and DeMille Engineering and Utah Statewide Archaeological Society in offering a reward of up to $2,500 for information leading to the conviction of individuals who vandalized the “First Canyon Site” rock art panel in Nine Mile Canyon.

Nine Mile Canyon is world-renown for its high concentration of rock art sites and is often called the world’s longest art gallery. The “First Site” rock art site was recently added to the National Register of Historic Places because of its importance to the prehistory of Nine Mile Canyon. Recently, vandals built a campfire under the site, staining the rock art panel. They also used charcoal from the campfire to write graffiti on the site. The damage to the rock art site was reported to the BLM by Price residents in early September.

“Although the rock art in Nine Mile canyon has survived hundreds of years, it is very delicate. Restoring rock art sites after deliberate vandalism is a complex, difficult process, and not always possible. Thoughtless actions such as these rob all people of part of their shared heritage and history,” said Patricia Clabaugh, manager for BLM’s Price Field Office. “The BLM is grateful to the many individuals in this area who dedicate their time and efforts as site stewards helping safeguard these sites for future generations.”

“The Nine Mile Canyon Coalition supports efforts by the BLM to prosecute those responsible for damage at the First Site rock art panel. As public land users we should all have no tolerance for those who damage or destroy our public resources,” said Pam Miller, Chairman of the Nine Mile Canyon Coalition.

Anyone with information on rock art vandalism in Nine Mile Canyon should contact the BLM at 1-800-722-3998 or the Price Field Office at 435-636-3600.

The BLM manages over 245 million acres. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The Bureau, with a budget of about $1 billion, also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM’s multiple-use mission is to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The Bureau accomplishes this by managing such activities as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, and by conserving natural, historical, cultural, and other resources on public lands.

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