The Wave Facts
- The short and simple, but descriptive, term of The Wave serves as the name of a particularly beautiful and remarkable geological formation. It also now represents one of the sites most frequently visited by tourists in its part of the continent.
- It’s also presently managed and maintained by the Bureau of Land Management, a federal organization. Thankfully, this does manage to afford the marvel of Nature with at least a certain amount of protection against the ravages of man.
- This truly breathtaking site also understandably now remains extremely well-known and popular among photographers. This occurs due to the incredible color patterns and the undulating forms that appear within its confines.
- Dedicated hikers also love the region for the extreme difficulty in simply reaching it. Although this also manages to provide it with some protection, it’s not enough. The entire area, due to its nature, remains extremely fragile and easily destroyed
- The immediate region, what now forms the Coyote Buttes Wilderness Area, requires special permits to enter it. The governing body overseeing its management further limits the number of visitors to The Wave to only 20 per day.
The Wave Physical Description
The breathtaking formation bearing the name of The Wave truly stands out among similar geological features. It does not do so, however, based on the merits of its sheer physical. It therefore proves the old adage about size being wholly irrelevant to importance.
Amazingly, in fact, this unique feature formed comprised of two major troughs. One of these wonders of natural processes, though, remains significantly larger than the other. The larger trough measures roughly 62 ft (19 m) wide, and about 118 ft (36 m) in total length.
The second component of the mind-boggling and unique structure man now calls The Wave, however, has far smaller dimensions to its credit. More precisely, this part of the feature only measures approximately 7 ft (2.1 m) wide and 52 ft (16 m) long.
The startling visual pattern formed due to the accumulation of layers of sand deposited atop existing layers. These later clung to the sandstone. It remains a stunning formation composed primarily of sand dunes that slowly changed to sandstone 190 million years ago.
The Wave Location, Formation, and Nature
The magnificent work of Nature we now call The Wave formed in a portion of the world highly respected for its vast geological beauty. In point of fact, the site formed in an area that now straddles the border between the two beautiful states of Utah and Arizona.
More precisely, this exact area lies in the desert regions of the country of the United States, in North America. The specific region in which it formed has been shaped over millions of years by a wide variety of natural forces, including volcanism and erosion.
The troughs comprising the awesome site called The Wave were originally eroded by rainwater. The basin that fed the rainwater through the area long since shrank below the point of being able to continue the process. Now it continues through wind erosion.
This site can be accessed only by an arduous hike over the extremely rough terrain. That type of terrain remains the norm throughout the entire area. Being a sandstone formation, the ridges and ribbed areas remain so fragile, that they will crumble underfoot.