Tuesday, December 28, 2010

One Last Post On Last Week's Storm

Although last week’s storm is now last week’s history, the effect of all that rain and snow melt on Zion National Park’s landscape continues to amaze me.    
And so, in light of this amazement, I would like to share with you a few final photos of my favorite waterfall.   It normally does not exist without a fairly intense storm such as we experienced bringing with it a massive amount of precipitation.   This waterfall is usually not here!

My ephemeral falls

This ephemeral falls is seen along the Observation Point trail in Zion Canyon.   The elevation of the trail head  is around 4360 ft above sea level...
Observation Point trailhead is at parking lot

My Christmas Day Tennessee visitors

Observation Point trail

...while a point where the trail crosses the run-off is around 5200 ft above sea level.  

The waterfall actually drains Echo Canyon and smaller canyons feeding into it from the east side of the park.  Without all this rain, though, this (creek? stream?  run-off?  pour-off?  It has no name on my 1987 1:32000 scale Zion NP map) is generally sandy and dry with the occasional pothole full of remnant water and tadpoles.   What is not visible (besides me!) in this last picture is the submerged trail as it curves into a narrows to the right.

So what is the height of the falls itself?

We gained about 940 feet elevation in a mile and a half of trail.
If the bottom of the falls is estimated (by me) to be 100 feet above the trailhead, and if the top of the falls is estimated (by me) to be 200 feet below where I am standing as the trail crosses the water (no gps reading here, just my crack eye-balling skills), then the falls should be around 600 feet high.  

Can you see the people?


  1. What a special treat to get a waterfall here. Not a good day for river walking.

  2. If you ever have the chance to visit Zion National Park, by all means do so. Especially at a good rainfall.