Canyonlands National Park is a wilderness of
countless canyons and buttes carved
by the Colorado River and its tributaries. Rivers divide the park into three districts: the Island in the Sky, the Needles, the Maze.
Petes Mesa forms a ridge separating the Maze itself (after which the District was
named) and Jasper Canyon.
On the West, the aptly named Maze, bounded by the Elearite Butte,
forms a thirty square mile convoluted puzzle
inscribed in sandstone, with more side canyons you'd think
possible in such a small area. The Chocolate Drops, a slender formation of Organ Rock Shale capped by White Rim
sandstone, forms an important navigational landmark for hikers.
On the East (marked by the glow of dawn in this
panorama), Jasper Canyon is totally off-limits to human travel, in
an effort to keep intact one of the most pristine
canyons of the southwest - unlike others, it
was never grazed.
North lie the Land of Standing Rocks with
Rock (where the trailhead is situated), the Standing Rock, Lizard, and Wall
seen on the horizon.