October 07, 2012

"Hoodoo you do" -- Bryce National Park -- part 7 of 10


click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

My first visit here was 50 years ago with relatives, and I revisited 40 years ago on my own. Not much has changed, EXCEPT the number of visitors seems to have increased dramatically. Busloads of Germans, especially, probably taking advantage of the current weakness of the dollar.

I had to laugh as I watched a group of Germans disembarking from their bus. Instead of first heading over to the viewpoint, many of them were checking out all the cars in the parking lot. I heard one lady screech "TEXAS", and the rest of the group rushed over and started snapping the license plate. Apparently they were having some sort of license plate photo contest.



click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

I hiked quite a ways down what I later found out was the most strenuous trail--the "Peek-a-boo". Technically this is not a canyon formed by one central stream, but an amphitheater, carved out of ancient rock deposited in the Cenozoic age. Erosion has exposed delicate and colorful pinnacles called hoodoos that are up to 200 feet high. Something, I thought, might be found on some distant planet.



click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

The brown, pink and red rock gets its hue from hematite (iron oxide); the yellow rock from limonite; and a splash of purples come from a mineral named pyrolusite.

Hoodoos, complete with arches, natural bridges, walls, and windows, are composed of soft sedimentary rock and are topped by a piece of harder, less easily eroded stone that protects the column from the elements. Bryce Canyon has one of the highest concentrations of hoodoos of any place on Earth.



click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

I think this photos is illustrative of the erosion process which has been going on, along with fracturing and uplift, for the past 50 to 70 million years. Impressive numbers, but perhaps less so these days with our government throwing around numbers in the billions and trillions. We are indeed a silly lot. A tiny blip in the scale of time. Completely insignificant, in my opinion, when standing next to a towering and colorful hoodoo. "Hoodoo you do?"


CLICK for new slideshow on my "BIG" photo website.

6 comments:

Karen @ away for the weekend said...

Oh my, this is so beautiful! I've always wanted to visit this park. I'm thinking I need to make it sooner rather than later! ( and that's funny about the license plates - made me chuckle :-)

Sinbad and I on the Loose said...

I haven't been back to Zion in 30 years mainly due to the crowds. I would like to do the Angel's Landing hike one more time though. I like that twisted tree in the last photo.

m e l i g r o s a said...

these are breathtaking donald, thanks so much for sharing them :) :)

AphotoAday said...

Thanks KAREN, SINBAD'S DAD (JOHN), AND MELIGROSA for the kind words. The pleasure was all mine. I had a great time.

namastenancy said...

I am always awed by your photos but these are reaching a peak of perfection that's indescriptible. I am loving following you on your journey. Each photo is better than the one before. Bravo! Bravo!

AphotoAday said...

Well thank you NAMASTENANCY. I'll have to frame your compliment -- don't think I've ever gotten one so glowing. Those were all pretty easy shots. The hike back up was a real slog, though...
And I've just been fretting about the two that I am using as my header today -- I think they have some serious faults, but maybe I can rescue them with others for that set. I'll be working on them tomorrow morning about 4AM. It'll be a mad rush to get the blog done so I can still get out for the pre-sunrise, just in case we have a pretty one. My pleasure, as usual...

 
under construction