Anibal Lopez has been exploring the Sierra Mountains for the past 5 years in search of indigenous pictographs. He has found over 200 archaeological sites where indigenous groups left their mark. Now, in collaboration with the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) and the state office of culture he is ready to tell part of the story.
Granted permits to publish photographs of the 11 registered sites but he still collaborating with the official registration of archaeological sites in the Cape Region of the Baja California Peninsula in the state of Baja California Sur, he has published a book. The book illustrates his work as a photographer and explorer.
The main goal of his work is to raise awareness to the local community, visitors, and foriegn residents about the evidence of the exteinct indigenous cultures. His work promotes the registration of the sites which will afford them legal protection from continued destruction and vandalism.
His work entails detailed communication with ranchers that live in the mountains. They are currently the unofficial guardians of these historical sites as the majority have been discovered by Anibal and others on private land owned by generations of family ranches. Once the sites are federally and state registered, they may be open to the public as are only a few currently. The idea would be to provide an incentive for the ranchers to care and allow passage to visitors.
Anibal has been invited to present his project to local schools all over La Paz. Recently he presented his project at the 6th annual national and regional meeting of anthropology and history. The book is scheduled to be printed early 2014 by the State Office of Culture, after a year long delay due to the lack of federal funding.
The future of these pictographs, once open to the public, will be to follow the “Leave No Trace” attitude. Vandalism has occurred in some of the sites and these are now lost forever. Therefore the preservation and the philosophy to leave only footprints, take only pictures will be the main contribution to preserving these sites.
As a major supporter of the work that the naturalists and biologists do at ProFaunaBaja , Todos Santos Eco Adventures offers half-day expeditions as part of a voluntourism opportunity. Your participation helps to raise funds to continue Anibal´s altruistic efforts to protect and guard these vulnerable sites from being lost forever.
Funds also will attributed to creating a rancher cooperative. Ranchers, the guardians of these archaeological sites, cannot individually compete with globalization and commercial products. The cooperative will help strengthen the economy of the local ranching community by helping them sell regional agricultural products in mainstream tourism market.
Half-Day and student expeditions include meeting ranchers, sampling local artisanal products, and measuring and monitoring archaeological sites that contain indigenous pictographs and artifacts.
The best way to become acquainted with a subject is to write a book about it – Benjamin Disraeli