Massive waves unearth incredible Ancient Hawaiian petroglyphs


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Extreme waves have allowed the sightings of petroglyphs in Hawaii which could be centuries old. Studying the petroglyphs has proven to be an impossible mission since most of the times, these precious ancient marks are hidden under 3 meters of sand.


Hawaiian petroglyphs. Image Credit: Melinda Shelton
Hawaiian petroglyphs. Image Credit: Melinda Shelton

While Hawaii is probably best known for its incredible beaches, its relaxing atmosphere and surfing excitement, it seems that there is room for history and archeologists to get excited too. Huge waves which have been striking Hawaii in recent times have given away the position of ancient Hawaiian Petroglyphs.

Under the right conditions, and if the waves are big enough, you might catch a glimpse of century-old rock art, mostly unknown to the rest of the world. While the chance to see these incredible petroglyphs is small, it’s possible to come across a day when the mysterious petroglyphs are visible for hours.

According to reports from Hawaii News Now, the Petroglyphs were spotted in February this year on Pine Trees Beach of the Big Island’s Kona Coast when one of the residents took advantage of the ocean and managed to snap images of two of the petroglyphs before they disappeared under the sand the next day. “They’re a really special thing to see, but they disappear really fast,” Salvio told the newsagent.

According to Salvio, in 42 years, only on four occasions was he able to spot the mysterious petroglyphs in Hawaii. “As you’re watching during the day the sand will cover them up and you try to sweep the sand off of them so they’ll stay up a little longer.”


 

The images depict what appears to be a man and a woman. Photo: Hodgson/A-Frame
The images depict what appears to be a man and a woman. Photo: Hodgson/A-Frame

Regrettably, studying the petroglyphs has proven to be an impossible mission since most of the times, these precious ancient marks are hidden under 3 meters of sand. Scientists estimate that around 70 ancient petroglyphs are located along the shore of Pine Trees.

But according to reports from Hawaii News Now, the petroglyphs along the shore of Pine Trees aren’t the only ones. In fact, there are are more petroglyphs at Rock Piles and Ke Iki.

Scientists speculate that there are thousands of these ancient carvings throughout the Island chain.

Professor James Bayman from the University of Hawaii said that some of the depictions represent dogs, specifically dog meat which was reserved for high-status men in ancient Hawaiian culture. However other intricate carvings represent different events from ancient Hawaiian inhabitants. Some petroglyphs are believed to represent a record of births while others were used to document travels among the islands. Researchers have identified ancient fishing techniques dating back at least 2000 years depicted in some of the carvings.

But whatever the meaning of the petroglyphs was, their existence proves that the events depicted there were extremely significant for ancient inhabitants.

“You’re realizing that people were here so long ago and you know they were at your same beach and you’re just reliving history again and you’re doing the same thing that they’ve done, playing in the same area. It’s pretty cool,” said Salvio in an interview.

According to Professor Bayman, the petroglyphs were created by striking the lava rock with another much harder rock.

The exact age of the petroglyphs remains a mystery.


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