Thursday, April 24, 2014


James Montgomery

             On the last day of our exploration into the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument we ventured into a Hackberry Canyon, exploring millions of years of rock formations. While walking in and around the small creek that ran through the middle of canyon we noticed ripples in the water. Upon closer inspection we could see the soft sand ripples at the bottom of the stream migrating slowly forward with the current. Ripples begin to form through when the water disrupts the grains of the sand on the bottom of the body of water.  The steeper, down current side of the ripple is always at the angle of repose.
            Deeper in the canyon, we noticed a large boulder with lithified ripples dating back to the Jurassic Period.  These embossed ripples had been preserved over millions of years.
What a great example of uniformitariansim.  We could see modern ripples forming in a stream bed next to ripples formed in the Jurassic almost 200 million years ago.


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