Friday, September 1, 2017

Canyonlands National Park

After visiting Newspaper Rock (previous blog) we made our way to Canyonlands National Park.

Canyonlands is huge, at almost 340,000 acres. There are several sections, and we visited "The Needles" area in the southeastern part of the park.

This is the Needles Range that gives this section of the park its name. As the sandstone erodes it forms amazing pillars and spires.

As we drove into the park we passed Sixshooter Peak.

A little further on we saw Wooden Shoe Arch.

There were heat warnings up for the park (after all, it is still August!!) and we decided to hike the shorter Slickrock Trail so we'd be out before things really heated up. That turned out to be a smart decision as it is really exposed out on the trails!

Slickrock refers to the bare rock that forms much of the landscape in Canyonlands. It is fairly smooth and can be slippery in places.

The Slickrock Trail is about 2.2 miles long and has several viewpoints along the way. An interpretive booklet describes how the landscape is shaped by water, wind and ice. The resulting area is harsh, but beautiful.
By far the most common wildlife was lizards. This Plateau Side-Blotched Lizard had some subtle blue spotting on it.

As we made our way around the trail we continued to find amazing views and landscapes.

The views continued even after we'd left the park and were headed back to our trailer. We plan to return to the area and do more exploring, but probably not in the middle of the summer!!

Mark

2 comments:

  1. Southern Utah is my favorite place to visit, so far that is. Great pictures too.

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  2. You're about to head back, right??

    ReplyDelete