There’s a ton of petrified wood around Utah. Some places right around here have very small chunks that are hard to recognize unless you really know what it looks like, while other spots have what are basically entire trees lying around. It’s pretty clear that millennia ago, this desert area supported much larger trees than we have these days.
This particular petrified tree is a super cool example. A friend showed it to me last year. Sticking out of a little wash within a mile of the highway, I’m pretty sure one day sooner than later it will just fall over as the water continues to cut away the dirt surrounding it.
While I sure can’t expound on the facts of petrified wood formation, suffice it to say that it’s a different term for the same thing that happens to some dinosaur bones: fossilization. Utah seems to have been a sweet spot for this process, both in dinosaurs and trees, and we’re lucky enough today to see plenty of such geologic record. If, of course, we keep our eyes open and stray a bit off the beaten path.
On this particular fall day, I saw plenty of great color too. The dreaded tamarisk is really pretty in fall, and so were a bunch of other growing things in this wash. (Note: can you tell I’m not a “growing things” expert?) It’s always a total thrill to be able to just roll out my front door and within ten minutes or less be at some spectacular place for wandering. I love living here! Although I’m rooting for a good Thai restaurant to come to town. Sigh…maybe one day.