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 Valley of Fire 

 

The west entrance to Valley of Fire, Nevada's first State Park.  Off in the distance in the background is Lake Mead.  There are two ways to enter the park ... through the east entrance via the Lake Mead Recreation Area (which means paying a $10 fee for the Rec Area, and another $10 fee for Valley of Fire), or traveling north on  I-15 for 55 miles and going through the west entrance. 

 

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After passing through the toll gate, one sees the first views of red sandstone formations. 

  

In this view, one can see Lake Mead in the background. 

  

The sandstone formations were formed from sand dunes during the age of the dinosaurs--150 million years ago. 

 

Uplifting and faulting and erosion have combined to create the landscape we see today. 

 

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A sandstone canyon just off a dirt loop road not far from the west entrance. 

 

Erosion is the name of the artist--creating cut-outs and holes. 

 
  

Looking back down the scenic loop road at the wonders of Nature. 

  
  

Robyn braved a climb up the sandstone for this photo. 

 

Traveling down the loop . 

 
 

Some awesome shapes and formations! 

 
 

Arch Rock. 

 
 

More promising features await around the bend! 

 
 

Atlatl Rock.  An atlatl was a throwing stick or dart thrower that gave ancient tribes more force for their spears.  The steel stairway takes the visitor to a close-up view of ancient petroglyphs.  How did the ancient artists get up there?

 
 

Climbing the stairs. 

 
 

Just a sample of the many petroglyphs to be seen at the top of the stairs.  These petroglyphs are 4,000 years old! 

 
 

A close-up of the petroglyphs. 

 
 

Looking through a cleft in the rock near the petroglyhs. 

 
 

Robyn made her own story from the pretroglyphs--starting with the human being (holding the spear horizontally) and the "reptile men" who were across the creek holding their big hands in the air. Native Americans lived in this area from between 300 B.C. and 1150 A.D. and included the Basket Maker People and the Anasazi.

 
 

Hiking down a trail to see a number of petrified logs. 

 
 

One of several petrified logs enclosed by a chainlink fences.  This tree was alive millions of years ago and grew in a forest several miles from its present location.  Flood waters carried the fallen log to its present location, where it was buried in the sand.  Microscopic minerals were deposited into the air spaces of the woody tissue--completely filling all available space.  The colors of the log are caused by oxides of iron and manganese.

 
  
 

The Valley of Fire Visitor's Center located near the center of the park. 

 

Displays inside the visitor's center. 

 

More displays. 

 
 

It is mind-boggling when considering all the changes that have taken place in this area over the millenia--once forests--once an ancient ocean. 

 
  

On the road to Rainbow Vista and Fire Canyon.  This view is looking back towards the visitor's center. 

  

Near the same location as the previous photo, but looking towards Rainbow Vista and Fire Canyon. 

 

This is the view from Rainbow Vista. 

 
 

Looking at the same scene with the camera moved slightly to the right. 

 
 

Fire Canyon. 

 
 

 Silica Dome 

 

Panorama Shots

 

The view seen of Valley of Fire after going through the west entrance.

 

 

 

 The view from Rainbow Vista.

 

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