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Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument Travel Guide: 8 reviews and 35 photos
Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument is located in the Lake Meredith National Recreation Area several miles off Texas Highway 136. It is off the beaten path but well worth a visit for anyone interested in ancient prehistoric indian culture and history. Your first stop will be the Visitor's Center since the only way to see the park is through a guided tour. Tours are given at 10 AM and 2 PM. Reservations are highly recommended. The Visitor's Center has some samples of the Alibates Flint on display along with a few displays showing the history of the area. They also have plans to build a recreation of an ancient pit house like those used in the area around 900 AD.
There are the remains of several of the flint quarries along the trail. They can most easily be identified by the red dirt visible from the digging and the rocks left behind that litter the hillside. Alibates flint is unique in its form and the brilliance of the colors. It has been discovered in numerous archeological sites all through the Great Plains and the Southwest United States. It was even found in sites belonging to the Clovis Man and Folsom Man showing the site was in use about 13,000 years ago. Alibates Flint was used up to the 1870s by more modern Native American Tribes. The trail along the quarries is fairly short but steep at times and has a lot of loose gravel. The ranger guiding you will set a pace that the slowest in the group can keep.
When one of the earlier people to explore the area came here, he was guided by a very knowledgeable local man named Alan Bates. That is where Alibates got its name. I was lucky enough to have Ranger Jennifer McKinney guide me. She was also very knowledgeable and gave the brief about the history of the quarries the area and its inhabitants without hestitation. She answered all my questions, was very personable and frankly is easy on the eyes. Also working at the Visitor's Center was a very good volunteer named Ron. He was also a wealth of information about the area.
- Pros:Interesting history, professional and personable staff
- Cons:A bit out of the way
- In a nutshell:Definitely worth a visit to learn about the area's history
As always I really enjoyed talking to the locals. Ranger McKinney and the volunteer Ron were both very nice and knew a... more travel advice
Here you can see one of the rocks mined for the flint and a few samples of the flint itself. more travel advice
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