Cougar Mtn Cave - Apr 2006

Selected for Google Maps and Google Earth

Comments (7)

jason-palmer@hotmail… on August 11, 2009

Hi-great photo. Climbed this mountain recently but did not find the cave. Do you feel that your google earth coordinates are pretty accurate? I'd love to go back and look at the cave...THANKS!

MaxFarrar on August 11, 2009

Jason: Yes the cave is on the south-facing cliff. I excavated there with a team from UC Davis in the summer of 1966. I believe we turned up almost nothing except tons of obsidian flake rejects (which anywhere else in the world would have been highly prized tools). I am going to guess that the cores were what was carried away.

Are there still a lot of obsidian nodules at the top of the mountain?

jason-palmer@hotmail… on August 15, 2009

Yes, my brother and I hiked around the rest of the mountain and found a huge amount of obsidian (small flakes up to bowling ball sized chunks, really an unbelievable amount...). We had a good time and were curious about early habitation and other sights in the christmas/fort rock valley that may have had caves/early human habitation sights. Thanks for the info, and if you know of any other interesting sights in the area, let me know.

MaxFarrar on August 17, 2009

Jason: Cougar Mountain Cave is more of a large rockshelter than a cave. So don't be too disappointed when you see it. My knowledge of the prehistory is circa 1966-67 so it is really out of date. I do remember though, that the cave was used during the late Pleistocene onwards, probably by transient people harvesting the obsidian nodules and reducing them to cores or blades which were lighter to carry away. Walking across the remarkable talus slope in front of the cave is like walking on broken glass and you hear tinkling sounds as pieces slide down the slope. A Pleistocene lake probably lapped at the front of the cave at times. Fort Rock Cave is nearby where Cressman excavated some reed sandals in the 1930's.

jason-palmer@hotmail… on August 17, 2009

Thanks for the information and great photos!

M. blakelylaw on December 14, 2012

Thanks for adding all of the history to your photos. It really helps in their appreciation.

mynabe on January 21, 2013

FYI, the cave is on private property and posted by the homeowners as No Trespassing. Also the cave was excavated decades ago all the way down to bedrock.

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Photo details

  • Uploaded on March 27, 2008
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by MaxFarrar
    • Camera: NIKON E4100
    • Taken on 2006/04/08 06:58:37
    • Exposure: 0.003s (1/400)
    • Focal Length: 5.80mm
    • F/Stop: f/2.800
    • ISO Speed: ISO50
    • Exposure Bias: 0.00 EV
    • No flash