• Spires of Cedar Mesa sandstone in Chesler Park (Needles District)

    Canyonlands

    National Park Utah

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Curtis Formation

The light-colored, grayish-green layer in the middle of the escarpment is the Curtis Formation (below the Sommerville).
The light-colored, grayish-green layer in the middle of the escarpment is the Curtis Formation (below the Sommerville).
NPS photo by Gary Cox
 

This layer does not occur in Canyonlands, but may be seen in nearby Capitol Reef National Park.

Deposited:
Mid to late Jurassic (144 to 208 million years ago)

Depositional Environment:
Shallow marine

Appearance:
Sandstone, shale and gypsum forms slopes

Example:
Exposed along the Green River

Did You Know?

Detail of the Great Gallery pictograph panel

Some of the rock art in Horseshoe Canyon was painted over 3,000 years ago. Now known as "Barrier Canyon" style rock art, it was painted by nomadic groups of hunter-gatherers that roamed throughout the southwest. More...