Australia: Petroglyphs, Frescos / Wollemi petroglyphs

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PHOTO: Cheryl Parkes 3258'50.98" 151 0'48.49"

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    Abstract. Petroglyphs are rare in the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area in comparison to Sydney, even though Sydney is close by. This is especially true of Wollemi National Park, in the World Heritage Area's north, despite there being an abundance of suitable rock platforms, many of which have axe grinding grooves. The recent discovery of a petroglyph of a 'bird' with random peck infill in a remote and rugged part of Wollemi National Park was surprising but consistent with great rock art diversity and time-depth emerging with each fieldtrip. In this paper we describe the discovery as well as other Wollemi petroglyph sites that are revealing equally unique or rare features. At one of these, Emu Cave, a minimum age was also obtained, the first radiocarbon rock art date from Wollemi National Park. We conclude that the location, subject matter, size and composition of Wollemi petroglyphs suggest they mark focal points of the rugged Wollemi landscape, places not only associated with religious significance but also locations marking key travel routes.