We saw petroglyphs at Toro Muerto

Corire Travel Blog

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It was so fecking hot. But so were the glyphs. Here's some more info from a website supporting conservation of the site:

In the opinion of Antonio Núñez Jiménez (author of a series of four
books on Peruvian rock art, RAR 6: 73-4) the petroglyphs of Toro Muerto,
engraved in volcanic rocks in a desert region near the village Coriri in
the Majes valley (Prov. Castillo, Dept. Arequipa, Peru) constitute ‘the
most noteworthy of all rock art sites in Peru’. The rediscoverer of this
site, Eloy Linares Málaga, has named it ‘the largest site in the world’.
It really is an enormous locality with thousands of petroglyphs in an
area extending for five kilometres.

Toro Muerto has been investigated since 1951 by Linares M. and
researchers from Australia, France, Germany, Cuba and other countries.

It has been published in a number of books and articles (e.g. Núñez
Jiménez 1986; Linares Málaga 1987, 1993).

About fifteen years ago the Peruvian archeologist Frederico Kauffmann
Doig, the then Director of the Instituto Nacional de Cultura (INC), had
a small building constructed at the access road to the site to control
visi-tors. Unfortunately, vigilance of the site was later aban-doned by
the INC. On the other hand, Linares M. initiated efforts to have Toro
Muerto declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco.

Unfortunately, this extraordinary rock art site is in great danger of
being destroyed completely. The commu-nity of new settlement near the
site, Candelaria, has begun irrigation of part of the zone. Moreover, an
agreement exists between the INC and the settlers which allows this
activity. Besides, many engraved rocks have been affected by the
quarrying of stone for construction work or by vandalism.
In June 1996 E. Linares Málaga and Matthias Strecker (Secretary and
Editor of the Bolivian Rock Art Research Society, SIARB) visited Toro
Muerto and offered a press conference in Arequipa. They suggest that the
following measures be taken in order to save this rock art site:

· organisation of a permanent exhibition on Toro Muerto in the village
of Coriri;
· publication of a flyer for tourists which explains the importance of
these petroglyphs;
· the Peruvian Ministers of Education (head of the INC) and Agriculture
should annul the agreement which allows irrigation of the zone;
· the ‘Policia de Turismo’ (police branch responsible for vigilance of
archaeological sites) should establish permanent supervision at Toro
Muerto;
· in case the state authorities should not be able to protect the site,
its administration might be transferred for a number of years to a
private entity which would look after the site and profit from tourism;
· the Ministry of Education should continue the initia-tive to have Toro
Muerto declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco.
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305 km (190 miles) traveled
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photo by: keatssycamore