Thursday, October 11, 2007

Cathedral Gorge State Park

Cathedral Gorge State Park: became Nevada's first of four state parks in 1935;

Along our route to Ely, we stopped at the Cathedral Gorge State Park. I wish my camera had a wide angle lens to truly capture this magnificent view and the feel of how massive this area is. Just beautiful!!

About one million years ago, much of this area (Meadow Valley) was covered by a lake. As the climate changed, the lake gradually drained, exposing the bottom sediments. Erosion from rainwater and melting snow carved rivulets in the siltstone and clay shale, eventually widening the cracks into gullies and canyons*.

The Miller Point Overlook (just to the right of us in this photo) offers outstanding views of the canyons, cliffs and spires. The "caves" on the east side of the Gorge are not true caves–the canyon walls twist and wind into slots which are open above but narrow and dark below.

In this park, you can take the ladders down the gorge and explore the "caves", picnic under the large shade of the ramada, hike along the trails, or camp using the facilities built by the Civilian Conservation Corps.

During the 1920's, Cathedral Gorge was popular for picnicking and hiking. Open-air plays and "vaudevilles" were given with the spires and canyons as backdrops* (and I can certainly see why). You really have to check it out yourself to appreciate the beauty of the Cathedral Gorge.

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