Burham Canyon Pictographs

Burham Canyon was once a village site for the  Kawaiisu and Kitanemuk. Both are Native American tribes that made their homes in the Tehachapi Mountains.  The pictograph elements are red, white and black. It is believed that the use of polychrome in the pictographs at Burham Canyon may make this a very sacred and ritually important site, there are only a few known sites that utilize this technique. The main  panel is located in a large outcropping of boulders at a vantage point that has saved it from the elements for roughly 2,000 years.

A number of milling stones are also present near the site.

Just a short distance below the main large panel there is a small boulder in the canyon. This small boulder contains pictographs in red paint. The design consists of a sun and “calendar like” tick marks.












Interested in visiting this site?

GUIDE SERVICE OPTION: Jim’s Guide Service may be the right choice for you. Jim can provide you with a single day to multiday rock art tours throughout the Mojave Desert.  Visit the guide website for more details.

BOOK OPTION: The Burham Canyon Pictograph Site is featured in Secret Places in the Mojave Desert Vol. III. Detailed maps, and GPS coordinates are included.  Order your copy now.







About the author

Jim Mattern

Jim is a scapegoat for the NPS, an author, adventurer, photographer, radio personality, guide, and location scout. His interests lie in Native American and cultural sites, ghost towns, mines, and natural wonders in the American Deserts.