elizabeth

03 May 2017 185 views
 
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photoblog image Desert Varnish

Desert Varnish

Some of you were interested in my post on the oxidation of the

rocks in Utah...  here is one of the articles from the National Park

Service that will explain it a bit further:

 

https://www.nps.gov/cany/learn/nature/desertvarnish.htm

 

"Desert varnish is the thin red to black coating found on exposed rock surfaces in arid

regions. Varnish is composed of clay minerals, oxides and hydroxides of manganese

and/or iron, as well as other particles such as sand grains and trace elements.

 

The distinctive elements are Manganese (Mn) and Iron (Fe).   The color of

rock varnish depends on the relative amounts of manganese and iron in it...

 Varnish surfaces tend to be shiny when the varnish is smooth and rich in manganese.

 

The sources for desert varnish components come from outside the rock,

most likely from atmospheric dust and surface runoff. Streaks of black

varnish often occur where water cascades over cliffs.

 

Thousands of years are required to form a complete coat of manganese-rich

desert varnish so it is rarely found on easily eroded surfaces. "

 

photoblog image Capitol Reef 22 b.jpg

 

 

Desert Varnish

Some of you were interested in my post on the oxidation of the

rocks in Utah...  here is one of the articles from the National Park

Service that will explain it a bit further:

 

https://www.nps.gov/cany/learn/nature/desertvarnish.htm

 

"Desert varnish is the thin red to black coating found on exposed rock surfaces in arid

regions. Varnish is composed of clay minerals, oxides and hydroxides of manganese

and/or iron, as well as other particles such as sand grains and trace elements.

 

The distinctive elements are Manganese (Mn) and Iron (Fe).   The color of

rock varnish depends on the relative amounts of manganese and iron in it...

 Varnish surfaces tend to be shiny when the varnish is smooth and rich in manganese.

 

The sources for desert varnish components come from outside the rock,

most likely from atmospheric dust and surface runoff. Streaks of black

varnish often occur where water cascades over cliffs.

 

Thousands of years are required to form a complete coat of manganese-rich

desert varnish so it is rarely found on easily eroded surfaces. "

 

photoblog image Capitol Reef 22 b.jpg

 

 

comments (17)

An interesting text to complement the pics...
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Thanks, Larry - I find it all quite fascinating!
so that's what this is. very interesting, Elizabeth. i may have seen similar features elsewhere without knowing it was caused over such a long period of time.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: smile Amazing, isn't it!
  • Ray
  • Not in United States
  • 3 May 2017, 05:31
Wonderful!

Reminds me so much of a section of the Grampians, in Victoria, Australia.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Thank you, Ray!
I'll have to look that up!
It all gets more and more awesome by the minute/day, Elizabeth.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: I thought so, too, Ginnie! Thank you!
  • Lisl
  • Bath, England
  • 3 May 2017, 06:36
A sort of desert pollution, Elizabeth?
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Well I don't know, Lisl.... I think of pollution as being primarily man made. Or at least being damaging. This is just a natural aging process - like rust, or copper corrosion. Do you think?
  • Chris
  • England
  • 3 May 2017, 06:46
Thank you Ellie, this is very interestinhg
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: You're welcome, Chris - I'm glad you think so. I think so! smile
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 3 May 2017, 07:38
Oh, this looks a bit creepy like bones ...
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Oh, sorry, Philine!
Time and nature have created some wonderful things
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: I agree, Bill!
Oh yes, a super affect Elizabeth.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: It's something, isn't it?!
  • Louis
  • South Africa
  • 3 May 2017, 10:40
The composition of the top picture is very artsy with the patterns. Excellent shot.

The two caves in the bottom one looks like two old maids shouting at each other (some imagination required smile)
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Thank you very much, Louis!

smile I think I see your old maids!
I guess the imp. word here is desert. This probably does not occur elsewhere. Here, the rocks sunburn if undisturbed and they turn black then get covered with licken. If the sandstone is eroded by water or wind this burn does not occur.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Yes - "arid"... smile Seems the opposite in our very different corners of the world!
  • Anne
  • France
  • 3 May 2017, 12:59
Beautiful shapes and colors.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Thank you very much, Anne!
The pictures and the narrative are so very interesting, thanks for that.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: You're welcome, Brian! I'm glad you think so!
  • Astrid
  • Netherlands
  • 3 May 2017, 16:58
Great pictures and a very educational text with it. I will look at the link later. Thank you for sharing.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Interesting stuff, isn't it?!
  • Alan
  • Carlisle
  • 3 May 2017, 17:15
After yesterday's shot I was trying to recall what yay told me the discolouring was called (I have the memory of a goldfish some days [perhaps - I can't recall fi I do or not!])

I'm pleased to learn the term again and especially how it occurs. it's fascinating to see it in the main photo especially; it looks quite regular.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Well there you go! Goldfish may actually have long memories... smile

It's an amazing thing isn't it!
Woo - crazy geology!
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Crazy is right!
  • Steven
  • Chicagoland
  • 4 May 2017, 19:26
Splendid colors, clarity and textures captured here!! And thank you for the background information.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: A little crazy, isn't it?! Thanks so much, Steven! And you're very welcome! smile

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camera Canon EOS Rebel T6s
exposure mode aperture priority
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aperture f/4.5
sensitivity ISO3200
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