Pyramids And Polygons Mar 17

A loop hike up the Pyramid, a hill in west Sedona, and a visit to the odd polygonal white tracings on red sandstone that is characteristic of the area, returning via the Scheurmann Trail
P3280133   PYRAMIDS AND POLYGONS P3280134 P3280135   We first climb the Pyramid, which is the hill next to Red Rock High P3280136   Daisies are coming imto bloom
P3280137 P3280138   Sooon we get high enough for good views across Oak Creek to Cathedral Rock P3280139 P3280140
P3280141   Houses on Oak Creek P3280142 tonemapped P3280143   A very old juniper P3280144   At the top of Pyramid, we climb the Fort Apache limestone
P3280146   The top of this layer has circular depressions created by algal weatehring in rainwater P3280147 P3280148   Learning about the geology as we go P3280150
P3280151 P3280153   Oak Creek is easily visible by its green  deciduous vegetation P3280154 P3280155   Right behind Cathedral Rock
P3280157 P3280158   A small pit house P3280159 P3280160   Back of the pyramid
P3280161 P3280162   This banana yuccahas edible fruit P3280164 tonemapped P3280165
P3280166   Explaining the House Mountain ancient volcanic structure P3280168 P3280169   The ocotillo will soon be in bloom P3280170
P3280171 P3280173 P3280174 P3280175   This private bridge across Oak Creek goes to one subdivision
P3280177 P3280178 P3280179   As we go down into the large wash containing polygons, we see columnar basalt up on the hill P3280180   There are several theories about why white polygons fprm around cracks in this one particular sandstone. It may be light-colored dune sand infiltrating cracks dueing long eras of dryness. or it maybe impoverishment of iron inside the polygons by bacteria.
P3280181   There is still some water in this scour hole P3280183 P3280184 P3280185   A good place for lunch
P3280186 P3280187   This wash is where we will climb next P3280189 P3280191   More columnar basalt, which cooled slowly from buried magma
P3280192 P3280193 P3280194 P3280195   Small concretions form atop this exposed sandstone
P3280196 P3280197 P3280199   Basalt boulders clogging the wash P3280200
P3280201 P3280202 P3280203   We emerge on top, crossing the Scheurmannn Trail P3280205 tonemapped
P3280206 tonemapped P3280207 P3280208 tonemapped P3280209   Scheurmann Tank, dug for cattle but now a waterhole for wildlife
P3280210 P3280212 P3280213   An old shagbark juniper P3280214
P3280215 P3280216 P3280217 tonemapped   From the top of the ridge heading back along the Scorpion Trail to our starting point, we can look back on Pyramid. Behind it are Cathedral and Courthouse Butte. P3280218
P3280219   Mormon tea P3280222 P3280223   A business jet comes in at Sedona Airport P3280224
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