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


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Moenkopi Formation

Balanced rock in the Moenkopi Formation.
Balanced rock in the Moenkopi Formation
NPS photo by Neal Herbert

Triassic Period (208 to 245 million years ago)

Depositional Environment:
Tropical tidal flat

Dark red-brown, ledge-forming sandstones and siltstones

Irregular slopes with ledges just above the White Rim Road at the Island in the Sky District of Canyonlands

Did You Know?

Biological Soil Crust

The dirt is alive! A living crust called "Biological Soil Crust" covers much of Canyonlands and the surrounding area. Composed of algae, lichens and bacteria, this crust provides a secure foundation for desert plants. Please stay on roads and trails to avoid trampling this important resource. More...