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NOVA: Ice Age Footprints

Kim Charlie with a sloth track.
Bella Falk. Courtesy of WGBH
Kim Charlie with a sloth track. Thousands of prehistoric footprints in New Mexico’s White Sands National Park capture moments when Ice Age humans crossed paths with enormous ground sloths and mammoths.

Premieres Wednesday, May 25, 2022 at 9 p.m. on KPBS TV + Sunday, May 29 at 9 p.m. on KPBS 2 / On demand with PBS Video App

Thousands of prehistoric footprints left by Ice Age humans and animals stretch for miles across the blinding white surfaces of New Mexico’s White Sands National Park. The phenomenal collection of prints preserves a unique series of snapshots of life and behavior, capturing moments when humans crossed paths with extinct Ice Age beasts, including enormous ground sloths and mammoths. Frozen in time, these intimate traces of human and animal activity represent evidence unknowable from any other type of archeological find. Not only do the tracks reveal remarkable details about life in the Ice Age, but radiocarbon dating of the footprints provides important new evidence about the people of the Americas.


Related Article: First Americans arrived at least 16,000 years ago, and probably by boat

Watch On Your Schedule:

NOVA “Ice Age Footprints” premieres Wednesday, May 25, 2022 at 9 pm ET/8C on PBS and will also be available for streaming online at, on NOVA’s YouTube channel, and via the PBS Video app, available on iOS, Android, Roku streaming devices, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Samsung Smart TV, Chromecast and VIZIO.

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A NOVA production by Windfall Films Ltd. (part of the Argonon Group) for GBH. Producer is Bella Falk. Directors are David Dugan and Bella Falk. Editor is Sabrina Burnard. Kirk Johnson is the Host and Sant Director of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History. Executive Producer for Windfall Films is David Dugan. Executive Producers for NOVA are Julia Cort and Chris Schmidt. NOVA is a production of GBH. Distributed internationally by PBS International.