The Blythe Intaglios are really hard to find. I’m not sure where I heard of them. I think I was watching Ancient Aliens and searched for more information on the Nazca Lines. Pictures of the Blythe geoglyphs popped up and immediately I was intrigued. I used to live four hours away. So, my bf and I decided to take a trip to see what they look like in real time.
There’s not a lot of information on the Intaglios. Even the city folk in Blythe don’t know much about them. Most people looked at me funny when I asked about the figures in the desert. Finally, we went to a hotel lobby and the concierge knew their location. Even then, the directions were vague: go down the main road (I95) for about 15 miles and there will be a turn on the left.
According to the internet, the Blythe Intaglios were discovered on November 12, 1931, by George Palmer. He was an air corp pilot flying from the Hoover Dam to Los Angeles and spotted what he called “Giant Desert Figures” as he was crossing over the Blythe area. Due to the Depression, the Intaglios weren’t properly investigated until 1952 when the National Geographic Society and the Smithsonian sent a team of archeologists to check out the site. Overhead pictures of the geoglyphs were printed in the September issue of the National Geographic.
The Blythe Intaglios were damaged during WWII when General S. Patton used the area for desert training. There are still visible tire marks on the geoglyphs and in the area. Eventually, the main geoglyphs were fenced off to protect them from more damage.
There are six figures total in three separate locations situated about 1000 feet from one another. The drawings are of animals, humanoids and geometric shapes. The ones that are obvious and gated on the side of the road are of the humanoids and animals. I didn’t see get to see the other ones. They are hidden and hard to find. You have to do some hiking to get to them.
No one knows who or when the drawings were created. The local Native Americans say the humanoids are depictions of Mastamho and Kataar who are twins and the Creator of Earth and all life. The lion figure is Hatakulya who is also part of the creation story. There’s also a horse and a snake.
UC Berkely just did some new research of the Intaglios in the last few years and dated the around 900 A.D. They geoglyphs were said to be drawn by scraping away the dark layers of rocks to expose the light layer of dirt below.
The Blythe Intaglios are out in the middle of nowhere down a highway with no signs or cell phone reception. Eventually, there’s a sign with an arrow that shows you have to turn left. From there, you turn and follow a graveled dirt to the fenced geoglyphs.
There are designated parking areas and an easy walk to the two sites with fenced-in drawings. The third site is harder to find. You have to hike about a half-mile up a 10% grade in order see the other geoglyphs. There aren’t signs and it’s not really clear how to get there. So we didn’t risk getting lost in the desert.
This is the biggest humanoid figure. It’s 171 feet long with long, spindly arms and legs. I’m not going to lie, up close it does look kind of like a gray alien. The similarities are uncanny. I’m not saying that’s what it is…but there is a resemblance.
This is supposed to be a horse or a mountain lion. There’s also a circular geometric shape in the lower left-hand corner.
Here is an ariel picture of both drawings for a point of reference.
Going to go see the Blythe Intaglios up close and personal is definitely worth a trip. They are something you have to see to believe. They are much bigger in person and you don’t get to see all the detail from pictures on the internet.
Despite the obvious track marks and damage from the WWII desert training you can clearly see the skill and detail that went into creating these majestic intaglios.