ShadowPic
Weeping Rock
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Stop 32 Weeping Rock
Location: Zion National Park
Date: March 12, 2007

Throughout much of the park, water can appear to come straight out of the rock creating spectacular hanging waterfalls that flow down the cliff face of the Navajo Sandstone.  Natural springs can flow between joints and beds in this bedrock.  Precipitation can percolate through the permeable sandstone until reaching an underlying impermeable layer.  The water then flows laterally across this surface until it comes in contact with the canyon walls and spills out into the canyon.

 


Water flowing out of the rock

 

One of Zion’s most popular attractions, Weeping Rock, is an example of this same process.  Weeping Rock is a perennial spring which flows out of a contact between Navajo Sandstone and the relatively impermeable Kayenta Formation.  Echo Canyon surface runoff provides ample supply of water to permeate through the rock and create a groundwater concentration.  As this water percolates downward it reaches the Kayenta Formation and follows it laterally to the canyon wall.

 


The water comes right out of the rock face

 


Looking out from under the overhang

 

 

By Phillip Larson