White Pocket, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument,AZ
The Paria Plateau is the central geographic feature of Vermillion Cliffs National Monument; a remote, sandy area 20 by 20 miles in size bordered by Buckskin Gulch and the Paria River to the north, the cliffs themselves to the east and south, and House Rock Valley to the west. Some parts are flat, others gently sloping, and the area is crossed only by rough tracks, most requiring a 4WD vehicle due to long stretches of deep, soft sand. Dotted across this generally featureless region are numerous small outcrops of the underlying Navajo sandstone, eroded to form unusually varied shapes, generally colored white or red but mixed with layers of many other shades.
The largest and best known formations are the Coyote Buttes, in the northwest corner of the plateau, including the famous Wave, while the second most visited site is six miles southeast - this is White Pocket, a group of domes and ridges covering an area of one square mile, below a larger mesa lined by similar rocks. A pocket, in this sense, refers to a relatively small area of land markedly different to its surroundings, which here, like most of the plateau, are sandy plains sparsely covered by bushes and small trees. White, or light grey is the dominant rock color, in contrast to the red of the Coyote Buttes, but the general features are similar - swirling, thin-layered strata, adjacent layers of contrasting color, and curious erosive features. Other colorful pockets are found further south and east on the plateau, some also with an official name but most unrecognized. There are several dozen locations, all with the potential to have photogenic formations.
20190926whitepocket02352019ArizonaAutumnFallLandscapeNorth AmericaRock FormationsRocksSandstoneScenicSeptemberSouthwestSouthwest U.S.Southwest United StatesU.S.A.USAUnited StatesUnited States of AmericaVermilion Cliffs National MonumentViewWhite Pocket