Natural Bridges National Monument, UT

Natural Bridges National Monument covers a relatively small area in southeast Utah, close to scenic highway UT 95 between Hanksville and Blanding. It is rather remote and not close to other parks so is not heavily visited, despite being near many fine, lesser known places in this part of the state such as White Canyon, Cedar Mesa, Grand Gulch Plateau and the La Sal Mountains. Unlike Arches National Park, with over 2,000 classified arches, there are only three bridges here though the monument also contains Anasazi cliff dwellings, pictographs and white sandstone canyons. Natural bridges are formed by running water and hence are much rarer than arches, which result from a variety of other erosional forces. This is also the reason why bridges tend to be found within deep canyons, sometimes quite hidden, whereas arches are usually high and exposed, often the last remnants of cliffs and ridges.

Natural Bridges National Monument, UT

Natural Bridges National Monument, UT

Location:  The bridges are reached by UT 275, a 4 mile side road forking off UT 95 close to the junction with UT 261 from Mexican Hat. The closest major town is Blanding, 38 miles east. Like all roads in this area, highway 275 crosses a flat, pinyon-juniper covered plateau around 6,500 feet in elevation – the top of the white Cedar Mesa sandstone layer – and bordered in most directions by distant red cliffs. The monument has a small visitor center

Natural Bridges National Monument, UT

Natural Bridges National Monument, UT

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Published in: on July 13, 2009 at 3:39 PM  Comments Off on Natural Bridges National Monument, UT  
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