View of Fisher Towers from the trail-head parking lot.After driving down Utah Route 128 from I-70 about 20 miles, you will come to a red dirt road and a sign pointing left toward Fisher Towers. As you probably recall, Fisher Towers is in the Richardson Ampitheater, in Professor Valley, within view of the red Colorado River. Fisher Towers and all the Permian and Triassic rocks making up the Richardson Ampitheater are very good examples of why the Colorado River sometimes runs red.
Follow the dirt road - this time of year I strongly recommend 4WD and caution - to the parking lot below the towers. A nice campground sits in the shadow of the towers, in case you want to spend the night. I thought it was a little chilly for that, however, and didn't stay.
Above, an excellent view of one of the towers looming overhead, with its dark red Moenkopi cap (Triassic), and red to dark purplish red Cutler Formation walls and base (Permian). If you follow the trail from the parking lot, you can walk beneath the towers, cross gullies and drainages, and generally have a good time.
Another close-up view of the towers behind a cliff in the Cutler Formation.
Above, a detail of mini-towers in the Cutler Formation.
In this photo, above, you can see what the Permian Cutler Formation looks like: the irregularly-bedded, orange-red to pinkish to purplish-red red beds below the red cliff of the Triassic Moenkopi, below the slope-forming Triassic Chinle Formation, which is below the Triassic Wingate Sandstone cliff at the very top of the slope.
The Moenkopi Formation does not appear to be very thick at Fisher Towers. In this last photo, it consists of just the dark red cliff in the center of the view, along with the medium red cliff just below that. The Cutler Formation starts at the first sign of the slope-forming, mostly talus-covered lighter purplish or pinkish red rocks below the cliff of Moenkopi. I think that the little ledge above the dark red Moenkopi cliff is part of the Chinle Formation, but am not entirely sure of where the upper Moenkopi contact lies. Individual ledges in the Chinle can be used as local marker beds, because they can be followed for some distance. Here, the Chinle is mostly reddish, but it can be various colors, as in the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest of Arizona.
This post, and the two preceding it in this series, were submitted to the first Carnival of the Arid, at Coyote Crossing.