Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
The Bureau of Land Management is responsible for managing more
than 262-million acres of land. The Staircase takes up almost 2-million
acres of it. Of the 51 states, 12 make up most
of the BLM managed land. The monument is located in Southern Utah between
the border of Glen Canyon, Capitol Reef, Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park.
It can be entered from the small town of Glendale located on the east
side of Zion National Park as well as several other locations. The Staircase
is the only US Monument managed by the BLM. Stay on marked trails and roads to protect the environment and since this is a wilderness area, to protect yourself.
Grand Staircase Lodging
Grand Staircase Geology
The geology of the Staircase is interesting in so many ways. There is no where on earth that preserves so much of our plants history than the Grand Staircase does. The steps and risers of the Staircase have been relatively stable for 600-million years, making it the perfect place on earth for study. Perhaps the best way
to describe its makeup is that it is a sandstone staircase
of cliffs that border Northern Arizona and rises to Bryce Canyon. The staircase is made up of risers and steps that are increasingly younger as they move away from the Grand Canyon. The risers
and steps are formed from alternating hard and soft layers. The risers in the
staircase are chocolate, vermillion, white, gray and pink. The lowest step is
at 3,000 ft. elevation. This is the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and is the
oldest step. The top riser is at almost 10,000 ft. elevation which is the pink
cliffs of Bryce Canyon. In the center is the Kaiparowits Plateau that fills in
much of the middle area reaching up to 8,000 ft.
From Zion National Park the closest entrance to the Staircase is
from Glendale, Utah.
From Zion, leave the east exit and continue to the junction with Highway 89 at Mount Carmel Junction. Head north on Highway 89 for 9 miles
to the Bench Road in Glendale (300 N.) which is located across from the Buffalo
Bistro and the Historic Smith Hotel. Turn right and
follow the graded dirt road into the monument. This road is not for winter travel. Be aware it can
be impassible if the roads are wet.
The Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument can be entered from Glendale, in East Zion.
2001 Hadrosaurian dinosaur dig in Kane County was in the Grand
Staircase. The skeleton of the dinosaur was found in the
Upper Cretaceous Kaiparowits Formation. Research is an ongoing event in the monument. Many studies are going on now and planned for the future, providing the
world with a paleontological rich history.