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Red Dead Redemption 2 guide: Geology for Beginners walkthrough and rock carving locations

How to find all 10 rock carvings for Francis Sinclair

Red Dead Redemption 2 guide to rock carvings Rockstar Games via Polygon

One of the stranger side missions you can pick up in Red Dead Redemption 2 is called “Geology for Beginners.” You’ll get this mission from an odd stranger named Francis Sinclair, who asks you to find 10 rock carvings scattered across the countryside. He doesn’t, however, tell you where to look for them.

This “Geology for Beginners” guide will walk you through the entire side mission — from picking it up to finding all the carvings to the rewards you’ll receive for your hard work. We’ve broken them up by state below, and you can find a gallery in each section with maps and landmarks to help you along. Then we’ll cover what you get as rewards and the special talisman you can make.

Finding Francis Sinclair (Geology for Beginners)

To start this stranger mission, you’ll first need to find and talk to Francis Sinclair. You’ll find his cabin to the northwest of Strawberry in West Elizabeth. (You may have to pay a bounty or avoid the law depending on when you go here — and how much you’ve helped that dirtbag Micah.)

Take the main road out of Strawberry to the west — it’s the road by the stagecoach — then take the first right. Follow that trail up and around to the left. Francis’ cabin will be a little off the road on your left.

Francis is the oddly dressed man sitting on the porch. Talk to him — even though he uses weird slang — and he’ll ask you find 10 rock carvings for him as part of a puzzle thingammy. Take his card so you can mail him the coordinates, then let’s get to work.

West Elizabeth rock carving locations

There are two rock carvings in West Elizabeth.

The gallery below is numbered to match the descriptions beneath it. Each one has a couple maps (one zoomed out and one zoomed in) to help you find your way along with any important landmarks and the carving itself.

  1. Head to the western (well, southwestern) shore of lake Owanjila pretty much directly west from Strawberry. Follow along the shore and look for a rocky outcropping.
  2. The next is near the peak of Mount Shann. The easiest way to get here is by taking the road north out of Strawberry. Follow the path through the switchbacks, and you’ll see the carving above you. (If you keep climbing, you’ll come to a giant skeleton. You can’t do anything there, but it’s still neat.)

Ambarino rock carving locations

There are five rock carvings in West Elizabeth.

The gallery below is numbered to match the descriptions beneath it. Each one has a couple maps (one zoomed out and one zoomed in) to help you find your way along with any important landmarks and the carving itself.

  1. You’ll find this rock carving near the peak of Mount Hagen in the Grizzlies West region of Ambarino. If you approach from the southwest, you’ll pass through the O’Driscoll camp you took out during Chapter 1. Follow the dead-end trail to the peak of Mount Hagen. The carving will be on your right.
  2. The next rock carving is just north of Window Rock quite a bit north from Valentine. There’s only one trail through this region, though, so you won’t get lost. Follow the road to Whinyard Creek, then follow the west shore of the creek north. The carving will be above you on your left.
  3. The final Ambarino rock carving is a little south of Moonstone Pond and a bit north of Emerald Station. This one’s a bit tricky to find because there’re no roads or real landmarks nearby. Follow the road north out of Emerald Station until you cross the state line and the trail turns left. Follow the rocky ridge to the west until you run into the imaginary line that connects Moonstone Pond and Emerald Station. You’re looking for a couple of rocky outcroppings (use the gallery above to help). Face south to look for the carving on the north face of the rocks.

New Hanover rock carving locations

There are five carvings in New Hanover.

The gallery below is numbered to match the descriptions beneath it. Each one has a couple maps (one zoomed out and one zoomed in) to help you find your way along with any important landmarks and the carving itself.

  1. (First, ignore the bounty we have in New Hanover. We didn’t start the fight. It wasn’t our fault.) Just to the northwest of Flatneck Station, follow the road along the Dakota river. Just to the southwest) of the burned-out town, you’ll see some rocky cliffs. Just before (north of) those cliffs, turn to the east-southeast and climb up the hill. Take the second path on your right, then walk along the cliff until you find the carving on your left.
  2. The second rock carving is along the Dakota River as well, straight north of Valentine. Follow the path north past Six Point Cabin, then take the first left. Just before the path drops down, bear left and make your way northwest. When you get to the clearing with the fallen log, walk down toward the cliff’s edge, then turn left. Follow the ledge along until you come to the rock carving on your left.
  3. The next rock carving is also along the Dakota River. This one is just northeast of Fort Wallace and just to the west-southwest of Bacchus Station. Approach the plateau from the south-southwest. Toward the top, watch for a small saddle in the rocky cliffs that leads down toward the river. When you hit the edge of the cliff, turn left and stick close to the edge. The carving will be just below you.
  4. Head to the Elysian Pool southeast of Annesburg. On the eastern side, just northwest of the bridge, look for an overhang in the rocky cliffs to the east. The rock carving is just above that overhang.
  5. To the northwest of Annesburg, near the Kamassa River and the Roanoke Valley, there’s a building marked as the Deer Cottage. Following the path west and south toward the Deer Cottage, and watch for some rocky plateaus on your left. Climb up onto the lower of the two, then look for the carving on your left.

Geology for Beginners rewards

Mail Francis the coordinates to receive your rewards. (You don’t have to mail them all in at once.)
Rockstar Games via Polygon

You’ll get rewards from Francis after you mail in your first and fifth sets of coordinates. You can send them from any post office — just like any of the game’s other collectibles. After the first set, Francis will send you a bottle of Kentucky Bourbon and $10. When you send in the fifth set, he’ll send you a Rock Statue. Once you send in the 10th and final set, you’ll get a letter asking you to come visit him.

Return to Francis

Your reward is on the table in the cabin.
Rockstar Games via Polygon

Once you receive Francis’ letter, head back to his cabin northwest of Strawberry — it’ll be marked on your map this time. We won’t talk about anything that happens there to avoid spoilers. Just make sure you grab the Old Brass Compass off the table inside before you leave.

Raven Claw Talisman

The Raven Claw Talisman reduces weapon wear by 20 percent.
Rockstar Games via Polygon

Take the Old Brass Compass to a fence. If you hand it and $29 dollars over, you’ll get the Raven Claw Talisman. This talisman will permanently slows down weapon degradation by 20 percent.

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