Utah’s Landscapes

Explore sandstone cliffs, hoodoos, arches, and moqui stones cover the area and are preserved in the national parks.

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Checkerboard Mesa along the Mt. Carmel Highway in Zion

11 Rock Formations in Zion Park

The extravagant red sedimentary rock is noticeable in the towering. Fossil-less cliffs that characterize the rocky, desert landscapes of Wyoming, Nevada, Utah and Southern California came from environment once like today’s Sahara Desert environment. This geology is called the Navajo Formation. Zion has the most impressive formations, however, up to 2,500 feet thick, making it the world’s deepest desert landscape. Read More...

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Amazing Sights in the Region

Many amazing things to see in the Zion National Park area, from Bright Angel Point in the Grand Canyon to Natural Bridge View in Bryce Canyon National Park– the regions top sights not to miss. Read More...

Bryce Canyon Hoodoos

It is certainly possible to enjoy the fantastical formations of Bryce Canyon from the scenic drive along the rim, but it is difficult to top getting up close with the hoodoos, there on the floor of the giant amphitheater that is Bryce Canyon. You’ll see intriguing and even bizarre details walking amid the hoodoos, while colors snap back and forth from muted to vibrant, as clouds and sunshine create visual magic. Read More...

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Hoodoos

These weirdly shaped rock spires that look somewhat like totem poles, are carved by water in arid environments. Read More...

Life-zones of Southern Utah

There’s tremendous variability in the physical geology of southern Utah, and for that reason, great variability in the life-zones and sub-ecosystems found in deserts, foothills, canyons, cliff-tops and mountains. Read More...

A life zone can be defined as any of a series of biogeographic zones into which a continent, region, etc. is divided both by latitude and altitude on the basis of the characteristic animal and plant life in a zone. At a largest scale, this can be seen in the life zones or biomes ranging from the tropics to the poles. On a smaller scale, it can be seen on the rising slopes of a mountain. The low point in southwest Utah is Beaverdam Wash, near St. George in Washington County, at 2,000 feet. Considering that the mean altitude for the rest of Utah is 6,092 feet, everything is looking up from Beaverdam Wash, including Zion National Park and neighboring country. Read More...

Kolob Arch in Zion's backcountry may be the second longest in the world. NPS Photo/Rendall Seely

Look for Rock Arches in Utah’s National Parks

These geological phenomena are formed when water percolates through cracks, and it freezes and expands, cracking and carving rock into natural arches. Read More...

Broken Moqui Marbles by MostlyDeserts

Moqui Marbles

Moqui Marbles consist of a sandstone center covered by a shell of hematite, an iron ore. They are reported to have mystical properties in some cultures, and prominent in Zion and Southern Utah. Read More...

Rock formations beyond Zion Park

Some of the most spectacular can be seen at Bryce Canyon, Arches National Park, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Natural Bridges, Cathedral Valley, and Monument Valley. Utah is also noted for its significant mountain ranges. When you drive out of Salt Lake City, the nearby Wasatch Range has endless opportunities for outdoor recreation, hiking, and, when it is the season for snow, both downhill and cross-country skiing. The La Sal Mountains, part of the Rocky Mountains, lie on the east side of the state, encompass the Moab region and form a backdrop for Arches National Park. Read More...

Utah Honey Bee and Thistle by James Phelps

Wildflowers in Zion

Zion National Park is well known among botanists, for its rich abundance of plant species — well over 1,000 and counting. “Zion has the most species in Utah and has the highest density of species,” said Fertig, who also works for Moenave Botanical Consulting in Kanab, Utah. Read More...

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Zion Arches

Amazing natural arches in Zion and farther east in Arches National Park. Read More...

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