The Utah section contains images from three of Southern Utah’s National Parks,
Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument, and scenic areas in Southern Utah.
This page is an overview with several selected images from each page or section and a
display composite leading to the page or section. The Utah section contains 1200 images
on its 29 pages, which detail Bryce Canyon, Capitol Reef and Arches National Parks,
Red Canyon, Grand Staircase Escalante and Assorted Southern Utah Scenery.

Click an image to open a larger version.
Use your back button to return to this page.
Click a Display Composite to visit the page.

Utah Index

Bryce Canyon NP
Red Canyon
Capitol Reef NP
Arches NP
Grand Staircase Escalante
Utah: Assorted Scenic

Utah Indian Lands and Anasazi Sites

Monument Valley


Images in this section are in a number of different Galleries on the Photoshelter website.
The Banner below leads to the Scenic Collections page where a Gallery can be selected.


Direct Links to the Utah Scenics and National Parks Galleries:

Utah National Parks
Utah Scenic

(Utah National Parks Galleries are duplicated in the Utah Scenic Collection)


Bryce Canyon

Bryce Canyon National Park in Southwest Utah is notable for its red-orange Hoodoos,
which are geological spires formed by frost-weathering and erosion. The Bryce Canyon
section is 8 pages containing over 400 images compiled from several visits to the park.


Bryce Canyon Queen’s Garden Trail Winter 5389
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Hoodoos and erosion features below the rim on the Queen’s Garden Trail in late December.

The Queen’s Garden Trail and the Navajo Trail are the two most popular in Bryce Canyon, and
can get quite crowded from mid-morning to mid-afternoon during the tourist season. Early in the
morning during the season is the best time to see the Queen’s Garden with a minimum of tourists,
and the hoodoos are spectacular in early morning light. Mid-to-late afternoon in Winter is also great,
when the red-orange rock formations are dusted with snow and contrast brilliantly with the blue sky.


Bryce Canyon Wall Street Canyon 6771
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The exit from the slot canyon section of Wall Street, taken from an angle to capture the glowing rock wall.


Bryce Canyon Fairyland Hoodoos at Sunset X2139
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A lenticular cloud over a fluorescent group of hoodoos at the head of Fairyland Canyon in the late afternoon before sunset.


Bryce Canyon Fairyland Trail X1818
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The Fairyland Trail offers superb Southwest scenery, and quite often you can have it all to yourself.
The park shuttle does not stop at Fairyland Canyon, and it does not get as many visitors as many of
the other sections of Bryce Canyon, but the Fairyland scenery and formations are just as spectacular.


Bryce Canyon Hoodoos at Sunrise in Winter 5508
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A colorful formation of snow-capped hoodoos at sunrise on a brisk Winter morning from Inspiration Point.


Bryce Canyon Hoodoos Sunrise Point 0470
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The hoodoos to the South of Sunrise Point, fluorescing in the low angle rays at sunrise. Taken with an 85mm telephoto.


Bryce Canyon Dead Tree at Sunrise Point 5315
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The view to the Northeast from the rim South of Sunrise Point in Winter.
A photogenic tree skeleton provides a foreground subject to the distant view
of the Chinese Wall and Fairyland hoodoos on the left, Sinking Ship Mesa and
Aquarius Plateau at left center. Tropic Valley and the Table Cliffs are in the center,
and the Mormon Temple formation and Bristlecone Point are at the upper right.
Red-orange rock blanketed in snow with a bright blue Utah sky. Magnificent.


Bryce Canyon Hoodoos Sunset Point X1880
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A prominent section of the Silent City hoodoos just north of and below Inspiration Point, taken in late afternoon in June.


Bryce Canyon Hoodoos at Sunrise in Winter 5487
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Bryce Amphitheater and the Silent City, looking north from Inspiration Point at sunrise in Winter.


Bryce Canyon Rim Winter 5321
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A Northeast view from the rim to the north of Sunrise Point in Winter.
At left are the Sinking Ship Mesa and Aquarius Plateau, and at center
are the Gulliver’s Castle hoodoo formation in front of Bristlecone Point.


Click the Display Composite above to visit the Bryce Canyon section

Red Canyon

There are a number of canyons in the Southwest called Red Canyon, including at least two in Utah,
which makes sense because of the brilliant red-orange rock in the area. This Red Canyon is at the
western end of Highway 12, a scenic road which leads to Bryce Canyon, Kodachrome Basin, and
through the Grand Staircase Escalante to Capitol Reef. Red Canyon is the first of the spectacular
scenic areas on this beautiful byway, famed for its association with the outlaw Butch Cassidy, who
was leader of the Wild Bunch Gang and the last of the great train robbers of the late 19th century.


Red Canyon Pink Ledges 1273
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Hoodoo formations in the Pink Ledges area, fluorescing in the late afternoon September light.


Red Canyon Balanced Rocks 1008
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The Balanced Rock hoodoos fluoresce golden-orange in the late afternoon light, vignetted by conifers in late September.


Red Canyon Rock Shelter Arches Trail 0781
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Stone shelter on the Arches Trail, allegedly built as a supply cache by Butch Cassidy, the leader of the Wild Bunch Gang.


Red Canyon Hoodoos Juniper Cassidy Trail X2243
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Mushroom hoodoos and Juniper on the Cassidy Trail.

The Cassidy Trail is named for Butch Cassidy, a famous outlaw of the late 19th century.
Used by the outlaw to evade capture before forming the Wild Bunch Gang, this scenic trail
has numerous hoodoos and other red-orange rock formations, surrounded by Juniper,
Limber Pine, Pinyon Pine and Bristlecone Pine trees in a Ponderosa Pine forest.


Red Canyon Limber Pine Cassidy Trail X2211
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An ancient, twisted Limber Pine stands among Ponderosa Pines on an upper plateau of the Cassidy Trail.


Red Canyon Bristlecone Pine Cassidy Trail X2214
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An ancient Bristlecone Pine on the Cassidy Trail plateau. The Bristlecone Pine is the oldest single living organism on Earth.


Red Canyon Golden Wall Trailhead X5737
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A view towards Butch Cassidy Draw across the forested flats at the Golden Wall Trailhead.

The Golden Wall Loop Trail leads into the hills of Red Canyon south of Highway 12.
The eastern side of the loop trail, called the Buckhorn Trail, is the trailhead I used to
enter and exit the Golden Wall area. The trail winds through a Pinyon and Ponderosa
Pine forest into a Fir forest with beautiful red-orange hoodoos and rock formations,
offering panoramic views of the Red Canyon area and the Sevier Valley beyond.


Red Canyon Juniper
Limber Pine Cassidy Trail X2188

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Juniper and Limber Pine on a slope above the Cassidy Trail.


Red Canyon Red Queen Arches Trail 0709
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The Red Queen beside the Windows Arches is one of the most prominent and well-known hoodoos on the Arches Trail.


Utah Prairie Dog Red Canyon X2263
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Sparky the Utah Prairie Dog sniffs a fragrant stalk near her extensive burrow in Red Canyon.


Click the Display Composite above to visit the Red Canyon section


Images in this section are in a number of different Galleries on the Photoshelter website.
The Banner below leads to the Scenic Collections page where a Gallery can be selected.


Direct Links to the Utah Scenics and National Parks Galleries:

Utah National Parks
Utah Scenic

(Utah National Parks Galleries are duplicated in the Utah Scenic Collection)


Capitol Reef

Originally called Wayne Wonderland in the 1920s, Capitol Reef National Park houses canyons,
buttes, and the astounding rock formations of the Waterpocket Fold in South Central Utah near the
Fremont River, land of the ancient Fremont Indian Culture (600-1300 AD) and Mormon Pioneers
from the 1880s, who built the town of Fruita in the Fremont Valley. Capitol Reef National Park
contains some of the most spectacular rock formations in the Southwestern United States,
exposing 200 million years of strata from the Permian, Triassic and Jurassic periods.


Juniper Panorama Point Capitol Reef 5791
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An ancient gnarled Juniper stretches its roots to maintain its precarious foothold atop
the red rocks and boulders of the Moenkopi Formation sandstone of Panorama Point.


Castle Meadow Capitol Reef 5827
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The Castle formation from Castle Meadow. Fluted Wingate sandstone crags stand atop Chinle and Moenkopi layers.


Grand Wash Cliffs Capitol Reef 1442
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These cliffs are at the western end of the Grand Wash, which cuts across the Waterpocket Fold to the Fremont River.


Egyptian Temple Capitol Reef 7199
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A side view of the Egyptian Temple formation taken from the eastern meadow.

The ripple-laminated formation known as the Egyptian Temple is one of the most
interesting rock formations in Capitol Reef National Park. It is formed from Moenkopi
Formation sandstone with Shinarump Chinle Formation capstone blocks atop the formation.

Fruita and the Fremont Petroglyphs

The Fruita area was originally settled by the Fremont Indian Culture between 600-1300 AD, who
left their petroglyphs on the Wingate Sandstone cliff faces. In 1880, the first Mormon settlement
was started in the valley by Nels Johnson, who was joined by others to form the community they
called Junction. In 1902, the name of this remote settlement was changed to Fruita based upon
the fruit of the famed orchards of this Eden in the Desert, widely known across Southern Utah.


Gifford Barn Capitol Reef 5846
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In the heart of the Fruita Valley is the Gifford Homestead and Barn, built in 1908 by the
first owner of the ranch, polygamist Calvin Pendleton, whose family lived here for 8 years.
The Pendletons sold the farm to Jorgen Jorgenson in 1916, who sold the ranch in 1928 to his
son-in-law Dewey Gifford, who stayed until 1969. The Giffords were the last residents of Fruita.


Fruita Schoolhouse Capitol Reef 7290
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The Fruita Schoolhouse was built in 1896 on land donated by Elijah Behunin, who built the one-room log schoolhouse. His twelve year old daughter Nettie was the first schoolteacher.


Mule Deer in Velvet Capitol Reef 7253
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In the Johnson Orchard, located on the site of Nels Johnson’s original homestead in Fruita, Mule Deer in full velvet (vascular skin coating the antlers) browse amongst fruit and nut trees.


Fremont Anthropomorphs Capitol Reef 7294
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The Anthropomorph panel at the Fruita Petroglyph Cliff depicts several trapezoidal-bodied
anthropomorphic figures in headdresses. Some have square featureless heads, some have
trapezoidal featureless heads, one has a square head with eyes and a nose, and several have
no head at all... just a neck with the headdress growing out of it. Bighorn Sheep are cavorting
around and above each of the figures, and there are a number of symbols on the panel.
Trapezoidal bodies are typical of the Classic Vernal style of Fremont petroglyph.
The earbobs on some of the figures were derived from Anasazi petroglyphs.


Click the Display Composite above to visit the Capitol Reef section

Arches National Park

Arches National Park contains the largest concentration of natural sandstone arches in the world.
Located just outside of Moab, Utah, it contains over 2000 natural arches in a geologic paradise of
Entrada Sandstone lying atop an enormous salt bed in the high desert of Southeastern Utah. The
pressure of the rock caused the salt to move, fracturing the rock and allowing erosion to form
fins, which over time were further eroded, forming the arches for which the Park is famous.


Archaeologist Cave Buccaneer Rock 1585
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Archaeologist Cave (where young Indiana Jones snatched the Cross from the bad guy)
is on the left. On the right is a spectacular portrait formation which I used to call “The Dane”
until I tracked down the name that Frank Beckwith gave it: Buccaneer Rock. Frank Beckwith
was the leader of the Arches National Monument Scientific Expedition in 1933-34. He named
many of the features in the Park, such as Delicate Arch, Landscape Arch, etc. He wrote a report
on the expedition, and published several articles, maps, and a geological survey of the area.


Buccaneer Rock Arches NP 1587
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Detail of Buccaneer Rock, an absolutely uncanny portrait of a bearded fellow with a pointed cap. Mother Nature at her best.


Sheep Rock Arches NP 1554
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Sheep Rock overlooked by the moon. I used a polarizing filter to darken the sky and increase color saturation.


Delicate Arch at Sunrise 1428

Delicate Arch and Winter Camp Wash in the golden light of sunrise. Morning light on the arch is on the other side.


Delicate Arch at Sunrise 1474

This image, taken at the end of the sunrise at 22mm from the slope below the arch, was a part of a Delicate Arch series.

To shoot the morning light hitting Delicate Arch, you have to descend a 45 to 50 degree slickrock slope
beyond the arch which leads to a roughly 100 foot drop into Winter Camp Wash. The Entrada Sandstone
is called slickrock because it is composed of very fine grains of sand, and even when dry it is quite slippery.
There are some natural potholes in the rock which offer purchase, but it is definitely a precarious perch.


The Organ Arches NP 1549
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An oblique view of the 700 foot tall sandstone fin called The Organ in the Courthouse Towers area.

Signs for The Organ were constantly removed and placed at the foot of one of the
towering phallic spires in the Park, so the rangers have given up replacing the sign.
I’m sure they laughed the first few times, but after a while it must have been tedious.


Bubo Tower Climbers Arches NP 1558
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Bubo Tower with climbers at the summit. Bubo Tower is a popular climbing destination from July to December.


Balanced Rock and Bubo Tower 1565
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Balanced Rock and Bubo Tower framed by a dead tree. The Entrada Sandstone caprock weighs nearly 3600 tons.


Double Arch Arches NP 1595
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Double Arch, South View, 25% polarization.

Both of the arches share the same foundation stone supporting one of their legs
(the left side of this image). The span of the larger opening is 148 feet (104 feet high).
Double Arch is different than many of the other arches in Arches National Park.
Created by chemical weathering from above, it is a Pothole Arch formation.


Click the Display Composite above to visit the Arches National Park page


Images in this section are in a number of different Galleries on the Photoshelter website.
The Banner below leads to the Scenic Collections page where a Gallery can be selected.


Direct Links to the Utah Scenics and National Parks Galleries:

Utah National Parks
Utah Scenic

(Utah National Parks Galleries are duplicated in the Utah Scenic Collection)


Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument

Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument occupies the largest land area of any
National Monument at 1.9 million acres. It extends from Bryce Canyon National Park
in the west to Capitol Reef National Park in the northeast, Glen Canyon in the east,
and the Utah/Arizona border in the south. This section contains pages of scenery
within the Grand Staircase Escalante and just outside the borders, including the
Grosvenor Arch, Kodachrome Basin, Devil’s Garden, Peek-a-Boo Slot Canyon,
Calf Creek Canyon, and some overlooks and scenery on Scenic Byway 12,
which forms the northern border to the Grand Staircase Escalante NM.


Grosvenor Arch 1157
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Grosvenor Arch, one of the most spectacular features in Grand Staircase Escalante, is
an unusual double arch formed in a ridge of yellowish Henrieville Sandstone with darker
Cedar Mountain and Dakota Formation sedimentary rock forming the capstone layer.
The people in the foreground help to provide scale (Grosvenor Arch is 152 feet tall).


Grosvenor Arch 1143
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One of a series of detail shots of the double arch in the Grosvenor Arch formation.


Sandstone Formation Kodachrome Basin 1180
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One of the sandstone pipes on the Sentinel Trail. The softer Entrada sandstone eroded
away (some remaining Entrada sandstone can be seen in the lower front) to leave the harder
cone-shaped intrusion. Several of this sort of sedimentary pipe can be seen in Kodachrome Basin.


Cannonville Castle in the Air 0995
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The Castle in the Air near Cannonville, Utah is formed from the light tan to white, red-banded
Cannonville Member of the Entrada Sandstone. This fine-grained sandstone and siltstone was
laid down during the Jurassic period in flat beds, which are weakly cemented with gypsum.


Powell Point Blues Overlook 0987
(529 KB)

Table Cliff Plateau and Powell Point from Blues Overlook on Scenic Byway 12 in Grand Staircase.
Powell Point was named for John Wesley Powell, the explorer who first navigated the Grand Canyon.
He retraced his route in 1871-1872, and ascended to the Point in 1872 to get a better view of the area.

The spine of gray-green shale and the area between the Overlook and Powell Point is called the “Blues”.


Devil’s Garden Mushroom Hoodoos 7023
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The Devil’s Garden Mushrooms framing a Gnarled Juniper across the Dry Wash.


Lower Calf Creek Falls 0925
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Lower Calf Creek Falls in Calf Creek Canyon.


Peek-a-Boo Slot Canyon Arch 1726
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The arch inside the entrance to Peek-a-Boo Slot Canyon.


Click the Display Composite above to visit the Grand Staircase Escalante section

Utah: Assorted Scenic

The Utah Scenic page is a potpourri of scenery including Aspens in fall color, Cedar Breaks,
Coral Pink Sands, Panguitch, Butch Cassidy’s Boyhood Home near Circleville, and assorted
images from Utah, such as Dinah the Vernal Dinosaur, Cedar City’s Rock Church, and more.


Aspens Boulder Mountain 1581
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Brilliant red Aspens framed by evergreens beside Scenic Byway 12 on Boulder Mountain.


Cedar Breaks Aspens 0378
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The Pink Cliffs at Cedar Breaks, framed by golden Aspens under a stormy sky.


Coral Sands Dune Sunflowers X2390
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Coral Pink Sand Dunes and blooming sunflowers in late June.
The locals call these Dune Sunflowers “Rough Mule’s Ear”.


Behind the Picket Fence Panguitch 2074
(611 KB)

A quintessential country scene in Panguitch Utah. Panguitch, from a Paiute Indian word
which means “Big Fish”, is near Bryce Canyon and was settled by pioneers in 1864.


Butch Cassidy Boyhood Home Circleville 2406
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Butch Cassidy’s boyhood home, the Parker Ranch in Circle Valley,
near the mouth of Circleville Canyon, three miles south of Circleville, Utah.

Butch Cassidy enjoys near-hero status in southern Utah. There are numerous
trails, canyons, streets and buildings named after the “Robin Hood of the West”,
and any actual remaining buildings that are associated with him are revered relics.


Rock Church Cedar City 0366
(548 KB)

Cedar City’s Rock Church contains multicolored stones hand-cut from the surrounding
red rock areas in Utah, Arizona and Nevada. Some contain native silver and copper ore.
The layout of the stones was created by master stonemasons from Germany who laid the
stone out on the ground to finalize the design before mounting it on the front of the church.


Click the Display Composite above to visit the Utah Scenic page


Images in this section are in a number of different Galleries on the Photoshelter website.
The Banner below leads to the Scenic Collections page where a Gallery can be selected.


Direct Links to the Utah Scenics and National Parks Galleries:

Utah National Parks
Utah Scenic

(Utah National Parks Galleries are duplicated in the Utah Scenic Collection)


Click the Display Composite above to return to the Southwest Index page