water, nature’s chisel

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Water, Natures chisel Reese ButterfieldIn this class we have learned that to make most of our natural disasters you need to just add water. From the destruction of flooding to creating some of the most beautiful and famous formations that we, here in Utah, get to enjoy with just a short car ride. I have realized how special these sights are and I try to take advantage of them as much as I can. The pictures in this presentation are from a Moab trip I took over this past Easter and camping trips I have taken in central Utah.

Barney Lake

Before we get to the happy side of waters effects I will show the evil, destructive side. Each year in the United States there are hundreds of floods that cause all sorts of damage. On average in the U.S. 300,000 Americans are forced to leave their homes do to flooding. It actually is the number one weather related killer in the U.S killing 135 people each year and causing billions in damage. In Utah since 1853 over 350 flash floods and more than 170 snowmelt floods have occurred. Flooding in Utah is actually the number 2 weather related cause of death, lighting taking the number 1 spot. Since 1950, 26 people have been killed by flash flooding in Utah.In this picture I was on Boulder Mountain in central Utah. Our ride down to Capital Reef National Forest was cut short due a road closing. We decided to walk down the road to check it outhttp://utahweather.org/UWC/lightning_precipitation/floods_flashfloods.html

As we wondered what could have happened to cause the road closure we turned a corner and noticed there was a bit of a problem. The road had been taken out by a massive flood. It uncovered the piping that had been put in to divert the small river under the road and carved a huge path of fallen trees where the water rushed threw the area.In both pictures I am the one with the helmet on checking out the damage. It was quite amazing how much was taken out. The hole was actually deeper than what is in the pictures. It continued underneath the piping another 5 to 6 feet.On another camping trip in central Utah my family and I came across another wiped out road due to flooding. In these pictures you can see the hole that was carved out by the water and the remaining water that continues to run down the mountain.

The picture on the right is showing my efforts to make it to the other side of the road on my dirt bike. The water and mud was too deep to ride through on my bike so my family and I built a bridge from fallen down trees on top of the thick wet mud so I wouldnt sink.

A couple more pictures of me trying to make it across the logs I set down. It was quite comical.There are many things water can do that will ruin our day but on the other hand it can do things that will just take your breath away. You can almost say it is quite the artist.

Delicate Arch is the most famous formation in Arches National park in Moab Utah. It is formed out of Entrada Sandstone that has been carved away by weathering and erosion. Another example of just adding water.

For Easter 2013 my friends and I decided to take a little trip down to Moab and while we were there we hiked up to delicate arch. I am the one on the far right.

Moab is famous for its stunning rock formations carved out by water and weathering. Many of these formations are seen as a play ground for off-road enthusiasts.Here we have a beautiful view of the Colorado river as my friends and I make the ascent up Moab Rim.

Every year each trail is a little different from the previous year due to the constant erosion. Here is my friend getting up a section he said it wasnt this difficult last year

This picture was taken along the trail Kane Creek in Moab. The water had carved out a massive canyon and you can see the different levels of water as it carved the many lines in the sand stone.

This was just about to the top of the canyon. You can see how far it goes down and how the water sliced right through the rock. Ill also add if you look closely in between the two closest trees to the cliff is a wrecked jeep that rolled off of the very road my friends and I were on.

Pictures of a river bed showing the interesting things water does when it carves through the sandstone

Water does some truly amazing things. It really has no care in the world if you think about it. It will destroy a road, city, buildings, or anything in its path if it wants to or it can carve out some of the most beautiful sights. Here in Utah we are lucky, or unlucky, to get to see all of it. We definitely have a lot of flooding due to our dry desert climate and we most definitely have the art work carved out by the water. The way I see it is water is two sides of the same coin. On one side is the strong destructive force, and on the other is the artist with a delicate hand. It is truly an interesting part of our planet.


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