Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Colorado Springs--Garden of the Gods City Park

On our way home we took a different route home and stopped in Colorado Springs.  My husband has had to travel here on work and wanted to take us to Pike's Peak and Garden of the Gods City Park.  This park is absolutely beautiful and the red stones are stunning, changing colors depending on how the sun light hits them.

The original name for this area was Red Rock Corral.  When in the 1800's two explorers  were awestruck by the impressive rock formations, exclaimed, "Why it is a fit place for the Gods to assemble" so it was renamed Garden of the Gods
You have to get a special climbing permit in order to climb the rocks, we stumbled on a group attempting to climb

The rocks were amazing and depending on how the light was hitting them it ranges from white to a brilliant red in color.  These types of rocks are examples of what are called "Red Beds", which were common in the Permian and Triassic Periods of geologic history.  Rocks from both Periods are found in this park.  The red color comes from the high iron content (essentially, rust) in the rocks when they were originally laid down as sediment.  

Many of these rocks were deposited as ancient rivers (some over 300 million years old) snaked back and forth through a desert landscape.  This is why, upon close examination, one can see coarse-grained conglomerate from the river interlaced with beds of very fine sand laid down by sand dunes.  This environment would similar to a river like the Nile running through the modern Sahara Desert.

Many of the rock formations had names, I think this one was called The Three Graces.  

There were certain sites where the kids could climb, which they loved

Daddy using his geology training (which is also ancient--almost thirty years......) and giving an impromptu science lesson on the rock formations.  These rocks were originally deposited horizontal, but the force of the uplift of the Rocky Mountains has folded them to where they're almost vertical.  In one area, the rocks have been deformed so much the strata are upside down, and you can see the imprint of raindrops from almost three hundred million years ago on the bottom of the rock!

This was a gorgeous place and the visitor center has an excellent video explaining why the rocks are red and how they got here.  


  1. Wow stunning photographs! We would love to visit here one day. I'm enjoying reading all your new adventures back in the US :-)

  2. That is one of our favorite places! The Springs has so many great places to visit. Focus on the Family has a fun area for kids and the Zoo there is amazing! Also, don't miss the Air Force Academy! Great pictures!

  3. What an awesome place to visit with a geologist:)

  4. I wanna go!!!!!!!!!!!

    My dad visited Garden of the Gods with a girlfriend back in the day and he came home talking about it. He went on and on about it and we, as teenagers, rolled our eyes. LOL
    Yes, I have to get there!