Southwest Canyons & Deserts: Colorado Plateau

The Colorado Plateau, a high desert region centered mainly in southern Utah and northern Arizona, is one of the most geologically and visually interesting deserts in the world. Remarkably stable through the geologic eons, for millions of years the area had been periodically covered by vast inland seas, building up many layers of sediments and dunes which now form the unique and photogenic slickrock sandstone landscapes of reefs, slot canyons, arches, natural bridges, and hoodoos that characterize the region. Nicknamed "Red Rock Country", passing clouds often show a pinkish red underside color from reflecting its vast expanses of red sandstone. Juniper trees and sagebrush are common plant species of the region.

The Colorado Plateau is also remarkable for the extensive amount of Ancestral Puebloan ruins, petroglyphs, and pictographs hidden throughout the region's canyons.

Page, Arizona, slot canyon, slot
Page, Arizona
Cliff Palace, Mesa Verde, cliff dwellings, Ancestral Puebloans, Colorado
Mesa Verde, Colorado
Grand Gulch, kiva, Utah, moonlight, Bears Ears National Monument
Grand Gulch, Bears Ears National Monument, Utah
Capitol Reef,Cathedral Valley,Utah
Capitol Reef National Park, Utah
slot canyon, Zebra, Escalante National Monument, Utah, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Kiva, interior, Grand Gulch, Utah, Bears Ears National Monument
Grand Gulch, Bears Ears National Monument, Utah
Owl Creek Canyon, ruins, Cedar Mesa, Utah, ancient, Bears Ears National Monument
Cedar Mesa, Bears Ears National Monument, Utah
Joint Trail, Chesler Park, Needles District, Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Buckskin Gulch, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
Zion National Park, sunset, Deertrap Mountain, Angels Landing, Utah
Zion National Park, Utah
Escalante, springtime, Utah, canyons, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah
Coyote Gulch, Jacob Hamblin Arch, Escalante, Utah, arch, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah
Robbers Roost, Utah, slot, canyon
Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Robbers Roost Canyon, Henry Mountains, Utah, sunset
Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Bentonite,San Rafael Swell,Utah
San Rafael Swell, Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Needles District, Utah, Elephant Canyon, Druid Arch
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Bryce Canyon National Park, Bryce Point, snowy, sunrise, Utah
Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
Cedar Mesa, Utah, ruins, Ancestral Puebloan, Bears Ears National Monument
Cedar Mesa, Bears Ears National Monument, Utah
Cedar Mesa, Citadel, Utah, ruins, Ancestral Puebloan, Bears Ears National Monument
Cedar Mesa, Bears Ears National Monument, Utah
Buckskin Gulch, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
Arizona, Coyote Buttes South, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona
Natural Bridges National Monument, Sipapu Bridge, Utah, White Canyon
Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah
Natural Bridges National Monument, Sipapu Bridge, Utah, White Canyon
Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Needles District, Utah, Elephant Canyon
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Needles District, Utah, Elephant Canyon
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Needles District, Utah, Elephant Canyon, Druid Arch
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Cliff Palace, ruins, Mesa Verde, Colorado
Mesa Verde, Colorado
Arizona, Coyote Buttes South, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona
cosmic ashtray, escalante, utah, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Boulder Mail Trail, Escalante, Escalante National Monument, Utah, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Buckskin Gulch, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, hiking
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
Buckskin Gulch, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, hiking
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Paria River, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, hiking
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
moonrise, Three Virgins, Zion National Park, Utah, Canyon Overlook
Zion National Park, Utah
Boulder Mail Trail, Escalante, Escalante National Monument, Utah, tent, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Arch, Utah, Green River
Green River, Utah
Robbers Roost, Dirty Devil River, Burr Point, Utah, sunset
Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Needles District, Utah, Chesler Park
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
petroglyph, horse, rattlesnake, Escalante, Utah, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah
Canyonlands National Park,False Kiva,Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Horsecollar Ruin, Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah, kiva, ruin, White Canyon, Ancestral Puebloan
Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah
Angel Arch, Canyonlands National Park, Salt Creek, Utah, November, arch, moon
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Arizona, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Paria River, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, hiking
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona
Buckskin Gulch, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, hiking
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
Escalante, Escalante National Monument, Utah, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Chimney Canyon,San Rafael Swell,Utah
San Rafael Swell, Utah
Little Grand Canyon,San Rafael Swell,Utah
San Rafael Swell, Utah
Utah, Cockscomb, Collared Lizard, lizard
The Cockscomb, Utah
Capitol Reef,Cathedral Valley,Utah
Capitol Reef National Park, Utah
Goosenecks State Park, Utah, panorama
Goosenecks State Park, Utah
Dark Canyon, Utah, dusk, reflection, Bears Ears National Monument, Dark Canyon Wilderness
Dark Canyon, Bears Ears National Monument, Utah
canyon, Escalante, Utah, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah
Arch, Utah, Green River
Green River, Utah
Neon Canyon, reflections, Escalante, Utah, alcove, Golden Cathedral, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah
Choprock Canyon, Escalante, Utah, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah
Green River,Utah, rocks
Green River, Utah
Grand Staircase - Escalante National Monument, Utah, Willis Creek, hiking
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
San Rafael Swell, Utah, panorama
San Rafael Swell, Utah
Black Dragon Canyon, San Rafael Swell, Utah, panorama, sunrise
San Rafael Swell, Utah
Red Canyon,Utah
Red Canyon, Utah
Arizona, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Paria River, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona
Buckskin Gulch, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, hiking
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
Buckskin Gulch, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, hiking
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
Capitol Reef,Utah, Waterpocket Fold, Navajo Knobs
Capitol Reef National Park, Utah
Red Canyon,Utah, sunset
Red Canyon, Utah
Kachina Bridge, Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah, White Canyon
Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah
Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah, pictographs, White Canyon, Ancestral Puebloan
Natural Bridges National Monument, Utah
Bryce Canyon, moonlight, national park, Utah
Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
Death Hollow, Escalante, Escalante National Monument, Utah, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Escalante, Escalante - Grand Staircase National Monument, Moqui marbles, Utah
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Eardley Canyon, San Rafael Swell, Utah, hiking
San Rafael Swell, Utah
All American Man, Canyonlands National Park, Salt Creek, Utah, pictographs, ruin, November
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Salt Creek, Utah, November, sunset
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Peakaboo, Salt Creek, Utah, November
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Canyonlands National Park, Peakaboo, Salt Creek, Utah, pictographs, November
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Broken Bow Arch, Escalante, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah, Willow Gulch
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah
Grand Staircase - Escalante National Monument, Utah, Willis Creek, hiking
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Bull Valley Gorge, Grand Staircase - Escalante National Monument, Utah, hiking
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Bull Valley Gorge, Grand Staircase - Escalante National Monument, Utah
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Bull Valley Gorge, Grand Staircase - Escalante National Monument, Utah, hiking
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah
Buckskin Gulch, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, hiking
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
Buckskin Gulch, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, hiking
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah
Arizona, Coyote Buttes South, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona
Arizona, Coyote Buttes South, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona
Arizona, Coyote Buttes South, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument
Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona
Arizona, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, White Pocket
Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, Arizona
Arizona, Utah, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, White Pocket
Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, Arizona
North Fork Coal Wash, San Rafael Swell, Utah
San Rafael Swell, Utah
Dirty Devil River, Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Robbers Roost Country, Utah, slot canyon
Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Robbers Roost Country, Utah, hiking, slot canyon
Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Robbers Roost Country, Utah, slot canyon
Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Robbers Roost Country, Utah, bighorn sheep
Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Dirty Devil River, Robbers Roost Country, Utah, panorama
Robbers Roost Country, Utah
Bears Ears National Monument, Cedar Mesa, Slickhorn Canyon, kiva, ruin
Cedar Mesa, Utah