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Wonderland of Rocks, Joshua Tree National Park, California, USA
California

Weird rock formations in all shapes and sizes inhabit the northern section of Joshua Tree National Park known as the Wonderland of Rocks.  A few official trails including the Boy Scout Trail, Barker Dam, and Wall Street Mill provide some access to the region.  With a good map, compass and plenty of water, the visitor can explore any of the side canyons to find little wonders of their own in the worn granite of the area.

Piles of boulders occur where weathering of the solid granite took place underground prior to exposure of the rock to the surface. Above ground, the granite not worn into boulders exhibits great cracks, thought to have formed by expansion as the weight of the overlying rock was removed by erosion. Subsequent further erosion of the granite smooths and opens these cracks, creating the rounded features and eventually cutting off slabs from the larger body of rock.

Copyright: John Roberts
Type: Spherical
Resolution: 18432x9216
Taken: 11/05/2012
Uploaded: 30/05/2012
Updated: 10/06/2014
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Tags: granite; geology; outdoors; nature; public lands; national park; desert
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The United States is one of the most diverse countries on earth, jam packed full of amazing sights from St. Patrick's cathedral in New York to Mount Hollywood California.The Northeast region is where it all started. Thirteen British colonies fought the American Revolution from here and won their independence in the first successful colonial rebellion in history. Take a look at these rolling hills carpeted with foliage along the Hudson river here, north of New York City.The American south is known for its polite people and slow pace of life. Probably they move slowly because it's so hot. Southerners tend not to trust people from "up north" because they talk too fast. Here's a cemetery in Georgia where you can find graves of soldiers from the Civil War.The West Coast is sort of like another country that exists to make the east coast jealous. California is full of nothing but grizzly old miners digging for gold, a few gangster rappers, and then actors. That is to say, the West Coast functions as the imagination of the US, like a weird little brother who teases everybody then gets famous for making freaky art.The central part of the country is flat farmland all the way over to the Rocky Mountains. Up in the northwest corner you can find creative people in places like Portland and Seattle, along with awesome snowboarding and good beer. Text by Steve Smith.