All Photographs © Brian & Nancy Morganti
Kanab Utah Region
Yellow Rock - Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument
October 12, 2017
Yellow Rock is a large cross-bedded sandstone dome that is almost completely devoid of vegetation. The dome serves as a high point that provides sweeping views of the surrounding landscape, but the main attraction is the amazing diversity of hues in the contoured Yellow Rock itself. The predominate color is Yellow, but stripes of pink, red, and white combine with the cross-bedded sandstone to create a tapestry of unique patterns and color. Due to the remoteness of this area, and the steep treacherous hike to get to the dome I was not able to get there as early as I would have liked. Still, the low angle of the October mid-morning sun did offer some interesting views, and best of all I had the entire place to myself for over two hours! Definitely one of the main highlights of our trip.
Yellow Rock - First Look: After ascending a rather steep narrow path via a narrow side canyon, I was greeted with my first look at the Yellow Rock Dome.
Yellow Rock - Approach:. A partially cairned trail cuts across sand and slickrock that eventually leads you to the base of the sandstone rock dome.
Yellow Rock - View North: There are also impressive views to both the north and south when approaching the dome. This view is looking north at wavy rock patterns of grey and gold.
Yellow Rock - View South: Another impressive view during the approach is to the south that features colorful layers of sandstone. Seems no matter which way one looks there is dramatic scenery to be enjoyed, making it difficult to decide where to hike first!
Yellow Rock - Juniper View: Here is a splendid view from the base of the Yellow Rock dome. Beyond this point there is very little vegetation to be seen, yet a few hardy Junipers do manage to stake a claim in the cracks of the sandstone.
Yellow Rock - Layered Sandstone: This view is looking south as I began my ascent up the dome. The morning sun was still low enough to accent the thin-layers of sandstone with its myriad of colors. The solitude and quiet of this area is wonderful!
Yellow Rock - Wood & Sandstone : A windblown piece of Juniper "driftwood" seems out of place against the barren landscape of Yellow Rock.
Yellow Rock - East Face of Dome: A view to the north ascending the eastern face of Yellow Rock and features both cross-bedding and thinly-layered sandstone patterns.
Yellow Rock - Stripe Patterns: A distinctive white strip climbs the face of the Yellow Rock, while multiple stripes in various colors criss-cross the dome.
Yellow Rock - White Stripe: A closer view of the white stripe and patterns found on the eastern facing slope of Yellow Rock. Here a few hardy plants have managed to grab a foothold in the stark landscape.
Yellow Rock - Cross Bedding: Another look at the colorful cross-bedding pattern found throughout Yellow Rock.
Yellow Rock - Patterns & Colors: A wide angle view of the beautiful sandstone patterns and colors of the Yellow Rock dome.
Yellow Rock - Artist Palette: This steep face of the dome gives the appearance of having been painted is soft pastel colors.
Yellow Rock - Artist View 2: A wider view of the pastel colors, patterns, and stripes found throughout Yellow Rock. It is easy to become disoriented if not paying attention as the views keep drawing you deeper and deeper into the landscape.
Yellow Rock - Folded Layers: Geological forces are evident in the ways the thin layers of sandstone have been stretched and folded in the distant past.
Yellow Rock - Sandstone Path: A raised "path" of sandstone blocks leads to a level plateau at the base of the Yellow Rock dome.
Yellow Rock - Patio Rest Stop: This level area near the base of the Yellow Rock dome could well serve as an attractive backyard BBQ area, complete with a grilling area constructed of Red Rocks. .
Yellow Rock - Cottonwood Wash: A view of Cottonwood Wash near the Hackberry Canyon parking area. The wash is the first leg of the hike. The wash leads to Yellow Rock trail, a steep cut through a jagged ridge of upturned strata.