24 May 2016

Stardate 2016.395

Utah's Little Grand Canyon

Following are some pics from the northern San Rafael Swell region. If you've driven I-70 West out of Green River, Utah, you no doubt have been impressed by the upthrust stone that looks impossible to breach. That's the eastern slope of the swell (dome-shaped anticline). North and south regions of the swell are split by I-70.

Snowcatcher and I visited the impressive eroded features of the northern region's Wedge area during a recent trip. If you ever visit this enchanted expanse, I recommend entering the Little Grand Canyon from the south via I-70 because of the enhanced canyon scenic values (although, it's all scenic). The start from the south is on typical ranch and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) access roads.

The northernmost extension of the central route of the historic Old Spanish Trail ran between Green River, Utah and Castle Dale, Utah, skirting the Wedge area to the north. The Old Spanish Trail was a trade route between Santa Fe, New Mexico, and southern California from the early 1800s to approximately 1850. The reason the trail goes so far north is to bypass the intricately complex canyon country of southern Utah and northern Arizona, which at the time was extremely difficult, if not impossible, to navigate.

After to 15 to 20 miles, the Little Grand Canyon came into view.


...and stunning

I'm not sure what these flagstone cairns were used for; our navigation was easy and straight-forward.

A blooming barrel cactus.

We enjoyed the erosive features of the Little Grand Canyon by cycling along the edge from the Wedge Overlook.

The San Rafael River flows through the canyon. The other side is Sid's Mountain Wilderness Study Area.

There is no better architect than time.

I'd love to explore the river bottom some time.

The weathered canyon uplands have a wrinkled personality all their own.

The low-light angle of early evening tends to bring the canyon to life.

More to come...


1 comment:

  1. What a stunning and jaw-dropping place! Perhaps Moab won't see as much of us now that we've found another desert paradise!


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