The scientific tourist #54 — Goosenecks

This week’s image (a panorama) comes from Utah, not far from Mexican Hat:

Goosenecks panorama

This formation is called the Goosenecks — it’s a stretch of the San Juan river where river meanders have eroded straight down over millennia (the official term is “entrenched river meanders”). As a result, the canyons are now more than 1,000 feet (300 m) deep, such that the walls separating opposite sides of a loop create thin natural land bridges. The meanders are so tightly wrapped (the river originally worked its way lazily across a plain here, before the plateau was uplifted) that a raft would travel for 5 miles along the river while only progressing 1 linear mile toward Lake Powell.

From here, the San Juan flows in a relatively straight fashion to its confluence with the Colorado river.

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One Response to The scientific tourist #54 — Goosenecks

  1. After reading this I looked these formations up on Google. They are simple amazing. The erosion layers are incredible to see, must have taken thousands upon thousands of years. Very humbling, maybe one day we can make it out there to see in person. Regards!

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