NPS Photo by Neal Herbert
Although Canyonlands may appear harsh and unchanging, the desert ecosystem is continually evolving. Weather, climatic shifts and geologic processes continue to shape this environment as they have for millennia.
More recently, human-caused factors such as air, noise and water pollution, as well as introduced species, have had a much greater impact on natural resources world-wide.
The undeveloped landscape of Canyonlands provides an ideal place to study how various environmental factors affect desert ecosystems, and predict what changes might be expected in the future.