GeoSight— Wall Arch, a Fallen Giant

geosights-wall-arch-beforeDuring the night of August 4, 2008, Utah lost a popular giant when Wall Arch, a prominent arch along the Devils Garden Trail in Arches National Park, collapsed.

While not the largest or most famous arch in the park, Wall Arch was still a favorite due to its proximity to Landscape Arch along the always-busy trail. With a measured span of 55 feet, it was ranked as 12th largest in the park (some publications and Web sites give the span as 71 feet – this is actually the “breadth”, a dimension that is not useful for comparing arches).

While no arch lasts forever, it is still extremely rare to see such a dramatic example of “geology in action.” We do not have a good geologic tool for dating arch formation, but we are sure that Wall Arch had stood nearly unchanged for hundreds, and probably thousands of years.