A large gray rock marked with 20 holes sits near Bonney Lake east of Tacoma. The moss-covered rock is a parallelogram about 12 ft. long by 4 ½ ft. high. According to the Puyallup Tribe of Indians the rock is an object of cultural and historic significance, a calendar and an observatory.
With the help of computer models, astronomer Dennis Regan and archaeologist Gerald Hedlund showed that the marks have helped people determine the direction for true north by pointing to the Big Dipper and Polaris, and also that their alignments point to other constellations and indicate seasonal changes. Scientists believe that the marks go back at least 200 years and were carved out by ancestors of the Puyallup Tribe for educational and religious purposes.
A “sun-dagger” rock similar to many other ancient observatories, it is a remnant left by the glacier thousands of years ago; it has been named Skystone for its function. Its value has attracted the interest of the Tacoma City Council and the Bonney Lake Historical Society, and a fence has been put around it for protection. A public nature trail leads to the rock. (The News Tribune, Tacoma, WA, Jan. 26, 2004)