Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Paradise Found: Part III - Horseshoe Bend

And the sights just keep coming. 

At a certain location just two miles outside Page, the Colorado River makes a 270 degree curve, called an entrenched meander known as Horseshoe Bend. Today we're at the overlook of Horseshoe Bend.
Wayne read all the safety precautions.
The orange rock all around here is Navajo Sandstone and this is the largest layer of it in the United States. It is composed of sand dunes dating to the Jurassic age -- they say, but how do they know for sure?

A small crowd was already there when we arrived. The path is about 1/2 mile each way, but the sand is deep and soft.
The surface above Horseshoe Bend can be seen between the two dark rock ledges in the center of the picture.

I liked these big sandstone cookies.
Sandstone is very strong as a whole using the compression of it's own weight to hold it together.  There are places, however, where sandstone is not strong... the top and the sides for example.  Signs warned to use caution going out too far onto the over-reaches of Horseshoe Bend overlook. Preaching to the choir here!

Not too close there, Wayne!
The first time we drove to Horseshoe Bend Overlook was early afternoon and I left Wayne in the car with the dogs to take the half-mile walk to the sight by myself.  It didn't take long to wear myself out in the deep sand going up the hill where I expected to see the famous bend in the Colorado River. To my surprise I was but 1/4 along the sandy trail.  I returned to the car.

Next morning, leaving Lexie and Ozzie at home,  Wayne and I drove back to Horseshoe Bend ready to take on the half-mile, deep sand path.  We took water, fresh batteries and hats.  The site did not disappoint.

As close as I'll get to the edge of Horseshoe Bend Overlook.
And there it was -- Horseshoe Bend.  My fear of heights kept me far back from the edge.  In the photo below, you can see my outstretched arms, holding my little camera, trying to be sure I got the entire horseshoe in the frame.  I could not do it.  No matter how I tried.  Better safe than dead.

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