Arborglyph Extravaganza 2019

Save the Dates!

Friday, August 7th - Sunday, August 11th, 2019

It’s arborglyph reservation time for Aspen Extravaganza VI; time to make your summer plans and we are hoping those will include arborglyph documentation with us!

This year’s 6th Aborglyph Extravaganza will take place in Conway Meadows, north of Mono Lake and along scenic Highway 395 in the Eastern Sierra, California.  This grove, located on Bureau of Land Management lands, was surveyed previously, but not officially documented to our current standards. This is an AMAZING grove!


Eastern Sierra Interpretive Association (ESIA) is again sponsoring the work and food for dinner, as well as supplying a portable toilet and cabana with wash station. It will be placed at camp.

As usual, you are responsible for bringing your own amenities beyond the toilet and wash station.

All equipment for documentation is supplied.

This location requires an approximately one-mile walk into the grove. It is not a difficult walk, but it is not on a trail, thus it is rough and travels through meadows.

Documentation will begin bright and early on Friday am with training for newbies to the process and refresher for our returning folks. We will work hard all day Friday and Saturday. Saturday night we will offer a “traditional American-Basque” meal and some evening entertainment. Sunday will be a ½ day, or for those who just can’t seem to leave, we will be working until the grove is complete.

We are looking for folks who can make all three days as it takes a while to get trained and to refresh “the eyes” for reading glyphs. Also, this grove is special... it will take more time and expertise. We can accommodate 12 volunteers. You will be volunteering for the Bureau of Land Management and will need to complete that form before you can start.

Please let us know as soon as you can if you want to join in this year.  (More details on locations and the schedule and such will be forthcoming to those who have committed to join us.)

If you have questions or need clarification, please email us at our email: or call our cell 760-258-6574.

Note: We will be conducting documentation in other locations throughout the summer in the Eastern Sierra, Eastern and Central Nevada, and Monitor Pass area so communications may take a while even after June.  Please be patient with us.

Arborglyph Project 2017

It all started when...

In August, a dedicated group of 14 volunteers from throughout California and Nevada spent three days in the Carson Ranger District of the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest documenting the past lives of sheepherders. Using aspen trees as their canvas and ten-penny nails, fingernails and small pocketknives to carve, the herders left a record (arborglyphs) of their experiences trailing sheep in the Sierra Nevada Mountains for over a century.

The project was a collaborative effort between Eastern Sierra Interpretive Association (ESIA) and the United States Forest Service (USFS). Kalie Crews, District Archeologist and Big Pine residents Nancy Hadlock and Richard Potashin (Aspenluv) coordinated the project. This marked the 4th year ESIA has sponsored an arborglyph documentation project. The crew included archeological technicians, history buffs, site stewards and individuals who worked on previous arborglyph efforts. Four groups of volunteers fought through dense underbrush and dodged thunderstorms to record 125 trees scribed with over 223 individual carvings.  A number of carvings were disfigured by time or by more recent carvings left by hunters, lovers and recreationists.

For the full report, please click here

ESIA and Humboldt-Toyiable National Forest volunteers documenting the arborglyphs