In the Desert
What to look for
Content including photographs are Copyright © 2014 - Present - Don & Linda Gilmore
This section includes numerous sub-titles. Inlcuded are:
The geology in the desert changes daily, whether it's caused by rain, wind, major slides, or earthquakes. Wind and rain probably have the biggest long term effect on the change in scenery in the desert. Geology data below that could come in handy.
Alluvial Fan Your first question has to be, "what is an Alluvial Fan"? You've probably driven over one and didn't know it. Caused by rains and floods this is an interesting geologic feature in the desert.
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Desert Varnish This chemical process has been changing the appearance of the desert for hundreds and thousands of years. So what is it? More info, photos and video.
Malpais The Spanish settlers gave this land form its name. Most of these land forms are not negotiable by any means. Many of the Malpais are still unexplored to this day. Caves and ice caves are associtated with them.
Rocks, Minerals This is NOT a complete listing of all the rocks and minerals you might find in the desert, there are just too many. We've tried to list and photograph a lot of the ones you are likely to run across in your travels. Some are used in jewelry.
Earthquake, Faults Earthquakes change the geology in the desert in a snap. In its aftermath it often leaves behind Faults or Fault Lines. Earthquakes happen everyday here in the desert. Some go un-noticed, some are devastating.
Volcanoes Mostly extinct, but the possibility of eruptions are quite real. Many volcanoes exist in the desert southwest and are often great landmarks.
Sand Dunes One of the remarkable geologic features in the desert. Usually a playground for off-roaders, campers and photographers.
There is lot we didn't cover here, like the "Hoodoo" pictured to the right. There are other finds you may run into in the desert, like fossils and petrified wood, just to mention a couple.
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The field guides shown above should of great interest and be very helpful out in the desert. We use one from the Audubon Society in our explorations