San Rafael (09/28/2004) The San Rafael Swell seen from Green River.
Rain Angels (09/19/2002) Buckhorn Wash Pictograph Panel. Red ochre and the roots of mountain mahogany were used to make red coloring. Some call these the 'Rain Angels'.
San Rafel Bridge. (09/19/2002) The old bridge over the San Rafel River was built in 1937 by the CCC.
San Raphael Reef (09/02/2002) A view of the San Raphael Reef from near exit 180 on i70.
I70 Utah (09/02/2002) I70 enters the San Raphael Reef (west of Green River). There is a dramatic escarpment of Navajo Sandstone towering over the Interstate as I70 begins its climb of the San Raphael Swell.
Navajo Sandstone (09/02/2002) The Navajo Sandstone was deposited in great sand dunes. As a result, the San Raphael Reef has these interesting swirls as it slowly erodes.
San Rafael Swell (09/02/2002) Canyons in the San Rafael Swell...viewed from the rest stop on I70 in Central Utah between Green River and Salina.
San Raphael Swell (09/02/2002) A view of the San Raphael Swell on I70 in central Utah. The domes are Navajo Sandstone.
San Rafael Swell
The San Rafael Swell is scenic geological formation on I70 in Central Utah. Like Capitol Reef, the swell was formed by a geological uplift. It is a large bulge in the surface of the earth. The top layers of sediment eroded away leaving towering cliffs in the Navajo and Wingate formations. Sandstone tends to have different erosion patterns at different angles of the stata. As a result you will see some extremely interesting formations in the erosion patterns.
The east side of the Swell is called the "San Rafael Reef". Here, the strata is at an extremely steep angle. In the central portion of the swell, the Sandstone is horizontal, and you see towering buttes and fanastically deep canyons. In other places of the swell, the sandstone was not stable, and simply eroded away.
Different several references spell the name as "San Raphael." Modern maps prefer "San Rafael."