Document Type


Date of Degree Completion

Fall 2019

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Cultural and Environmental Resource Management

Committee Chair

Steven Hackenberger

Second Committee Member

Jennifer Lipton

Third Committee Member

Sterling Quinn


This thesis evaluates the history of rock imagery documentation and the ways it can be improved moving forward. This study also explores the potentials of using viewshed analysis to examine the cultural landscape. The documentation and locational analysis support recommendations for future study and protection of rock image sites. There are currently twelve known rock imagery sites at the Joint Base Lewis-McChord - Yakima Training Center (YTC). Most of these sites have not been assessed for changes in integrity or damages in over twenty years. Prior documentation efforts have produced site forms with varying degrees of accuracy and completeness. During the documentation effort for this research, eleven of the twelve rock imagery sites were re-documented using a standardized methodology to ensure that all eleven sites were documented to the same level of completeness; including scaled field drawings, digital photographs, and digitally enhanced images of the pictographs and petroglyphs. Thus, providing YTC cultural resource managers a standard baseline with which to assess these sites later on. The cultural landscape surrounding the rock imagery was examined using a viewshed analysis to make a connection between patterns in the landscape and the rock imagery itself. Seven of the twelve sites have a direct line of sight with special horizon events, with a potential eighth; indicating that horizon events may be a contributing factor to rock imagery placement. Viewshed analysis did not seem to be as useful for establishing associations between rock image sites and other factors, such as potential root soils.


Please note: Sensitive site locations blacked out. Information requests can be made to the Cultural Resource Manager, Yakama Army Training Center, Selah WA.