Silver Falls Creek, Escalante, Utah
To enter the canyons of the Escalante is to enter another world. The weather limits travel to spring and fall, and water can be scarce, but the terrain is mild, and filled with magic. Approaching from the west, the oddly broken and bent landscape gives no clue where a canyon might be. As one walks down a dry, sandy wash, little walls a few feet high appear, and after several miles the walls have grown to several hundred feet. They twist and turn, losing one in a benevolent maze. This inner world is complete with magnificent overhanging alcoves, arches, desert varnish, tapestries (vertical bands of lichens which grow where water pours over the walls during storms), a great variety of living things that often take on a mystical aspect, and light that becomes magic as it bounces off this wall and that.