Hello friends,

Here I sit in my office in the middle of a summer hailstorm that popped up out of seemingly nowhere. Listening to the ping and patter of the hail stones (only small, thank heavens) on the windows and roof, I am reminded of the ping and patter of gravel on our trucks as we move slowly toward sites in the beautiful expanse of the Lower Pecos Canyonlands.

A hailstorm may seem a strange time to focus on gratitude, but I feel so grateful. At Shumla we get to see some of the most stunning vistas in the world. We get to view the art of people so like ourselves, interpreting and influencing their world through their remarkable paintings. We get to preserve that art and share it with others. And together we slowly inch down the road, gravel pinging, toward knowing these people and ourselves better. We get to do this because of you and your gifts, for which, we are endlessly grateful.

This month is a month of hellos and goodbyes. We welcome an infant born to one of our staff members, as well as a new employee. We also say goodbye to a staff member who has meant so much to our team. We are always happy to share our joys, our sorrows and our gratitude with you.

Wishing you the best always,


On May 27, baby Ivy was born to Shumla Accounting Manager, Veronica, and her husband Jason Hackett.

She is adorable in every way and we are so happy for her lucky parents! And who knew that Shumla bandanas would make the perfect swaddle?

Welcome baby Ivy!

On May 30th we had a special delivery of a different kind, a new Preservation Archaeologist, David Keim.

David is joining our team after 5+ years of experience in Cultural Resource Management. And this isn’t his first experience with Shumla or rock art! He volunteered with the team last year to gather data in Panther Cave as part of the Hearthstone Project. (Top right in photo below.)

David's master’s thesis investigated the risks facing rock art in the Lower Pecos and potential mitigation techniques to prevent further damage to the rock art. A great addition to our preservation mission!

David is from Bruceville-Eddy, a small town near Waco. He and his wife Megan live in San Antonio and welcomed their son Teddy in July of last year. He enjoys baseball and outdoors activities. Good thing! We're going to send him outside a lot! In the picture below he is training with Seamus using the Gigapan gimble outside of our San Marcos office.

We are so excited to have David aboard. Welcome, David!

On June 22nd, Audrey Lindsay headed off on her next adventure in archaeology in Colorado.

Audrey Lindsay has been a cornerstone of Shumla's archaeological operation for over three years. She moved to Colorado in the middle of last year, but we just couldn't let her go with all that amazing institutional knowledge.

Over the past year, she has worked hard to train our team members in Shumla's methods and to codify many of them into procedural documents and protocols. We are forever grateful for her hard work and wish her the absolute best in her new position in beautiful Colorado. Thank you, Audrey!

"The unique STEM course is a collaboration between Comstock ISD, a one-campus district of about 200 students, and the internationally known Shumla Archaeological Research and Education Center..."

Check out this beautifully written and photographed article by Texas Lone Star Magazine managing editor, Laura Tolley. Texas Lone Star is the magazine of the Texas Association of School Boards. Glad our program is appreciated as such positive contribution by the leadership in education. We sure love our Scholars, especially when they move on with greater confidence and direction thanks to our Shumla Scholars program.

We've added a new Trek to Panther Cave!

Before you pack your hiking stick, it is still impossible to get there in person. However, Shumla has captured hundreds of high-resolution images, 3D models and close-ups. We're offering the next best thing to being there.

The Itinerary of the Virtual Panther Cave trek:

  • In the morning, a Shumla Archaeologist will guide you through a virtual tour of Panther Cave and give you a close-up view of the figures that fill the 80-meter-long panel. You’ll also get a behind-the-scenes tour of Shumla's HQ and one-of-a-kind plasma oxidation laboratory. Then we'll have lunch together at J&P Bar and Grill in Comstock.
  • After lunch, we’ll head over to Seminole Canyon State Park and participate in one of their Van-tastic Tours to the overlook where you can glimpse the Panther Cave mural from across the canyon. Binoculars are recommended for optimal viewing.

This is a great option if you:

  1. Are interested in Shumla’s digital preservation methods,
  2. Want to see rock art but can't or would rather not hike into the canyons.

Both Shumla HQ and the Van-tastic van are air-conditioned, so we will stay nice and cool, even if the weather is warm.

Full Shumla Trek Schedule

Fall 2023

September Treks

Virtual Trek to Panther Cave at Shumla HQ and Visit to Panther Cave Overlook

Saturday, September 9

Painted Shelter and Vaquero Shelter

Sunday, September 24

October Treks

Los Vientos and Sunburst Shelter

Saturday, October 28

Black Cave and Vaquero Shelter

Sunday, October 29

November Treks

Eagle Cave, Skiles Shelter, Kelley Cave

Saturday, November 4

Vinegarroon Historic Railroad Camp

Sunday, November 5

Meyers Springs Shelter and Historic Site

Saturday, November 18

Fate Bell, Fate Bell Annex, and Running Horse Shelters

Sunday, November 19

December Treks

Virtual Trek to Panther Cave at Shumla HQ and Visit to Panther Cave Overlook

Saturday, December 2

Gift a unique Shumla Trek experience to someone special. Purchase a Treks Gift Voucher, on our website. Your recipient can then choose their trek and pay with the voucher.

We're not here if you're not with us.

We have an incredible team and a clear vision for what's to come. With your support we can continue vital preservation, life-changing education and epic discoveries. Please support Shumla with a gift today!

Support Shumla

Shumla Archaeological Research & Education Center 

P.O. Box 627, Comstock, TX 78837

info@shumla.org | shumla.org 


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