Bryce Canyon

Posted by on May 20, 2011 in Nuttings from the Front | 0 comments


Part of the student requirements for the geology field class that Mary Jo & I led to the Southwest was a written Travel Guide for the trip. The students were divided into groups of 4-5 and each group wrote their own “Guidebook” complete with photos and written descriptions of the sites visited.

Part of the reason to have them do this is to have them think more deeply about what they are seeing and to have something to remind them of the trip. One of the student groups wrote the following about Bryce Canyon:

“Bryce Canyon, a winding labyrinth of canyons and gorges, [is] a place where beauty and hostility meet to form this wonder of geology. Towering Hoodoos (erosional remnants) dominate the landscape, giving the impression of sentinels guarding a priceless treasure. Deep in the remote areas of the canyon you can find several mini ecosystems. These range from the damp cool northwest to the dry deserts of the south. If you look hard enough you could find a noble Douglas fir or a golden Aspen. Don’t forget to look down though. A vast variety of floral and animal life abounds along the sides of the park’s 50 miles of trails. Living in the shelter of small scraggly bushes you can find many species of lizards, bugs, and a vast assortment of other animals. For the more intrepid explorer, the park offers more advanced trails that lead you to quiet streams and shady glades. For the beginner, a wide selection of easier trails is offered that lead you to stunning overlooks.

            When viewing such a splendid landscape, one question is always asked, what caused this? Rangers and park staff will say that it is the result of erosions over millions of years. However the evidence for this is scarce. When looking at the make-up of this canyon, we see what appears to be hardened mud. How did that mud get there?  . . .

If the Bible is true and if there was a global flood, then you would have a lot of mud being deposited in a very short time. Then if you believe what Psalm 104 says about the mountains rising and the valleys falling, you can explain the broken state of the landscape. Add the post-flood run-off of water through the broken landscape and you get canyons. Add also the fact that as the mountains were rising, there would have been natural dams forming all over the world. After a period of time these dams would burst. This would unleash a torrent of water across the countryside, deepening the already existing canyons. Thus what would have naturally taken a huge amount of time is accomplished extremely quickly. When you visit Bryce Canyon, I hope that you are reminded of Noah’s Flood and the impact that it had on our earth.”

Dave Nutting

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