How the Track Rock Research Study Was Conducted

The Forest Service is charged with protecting and managing significant archaeological and historic sites. In order to better protect Track Rock, the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests conducted an assessment of the site that documented its condition and made management recommendations. This research at Track Rock Gap was carried out by Johannes (Jannie) Loubser, an archaeologist who specializes in rock art research. Loubser made tracings of the figures using plastic that covered the boulders. Careful tracing of motifs that occur on stable rock surfaces is advantageous over photographs for a variety of reasons. Pens were used to trace the outlines of any natural edges, and the pecked, scraped, and incised figures. The field tracings were then scanned and converted to digital format. Nighttime photography was also conducted to provide additional contrast. Halogen lamps were used to side-light the boulders at Track Rock. These photographs illustrate the dramatic day-time and night-time differences in petroglyph visibility on Boulder 5 at Track Rock.

A photo of some of the carvings on a soapstone boulder at Track Rock Gap
Track Rock Boulder 2 during recording.
A photo of some of the carvings on a soapstone boulder at Track Rock Gap
This photo shows boulder 5 under mid-day sun.
A photo of some of the carvings on a soapstone boulder at Track Rock Gap
This photo shows boulder 5 at night using halogen lamps to illuminate the carvings from the side.