Second Wave at Dusk, Arizona

Selected for Google Maps and Google Earth

I took this photo during my hike in January 2012 after winning a lottery. This unique fragile area is protected and is limited to no more than 20 people accessing it each day.

"The Wave” consists of intersecting U-shaped troughs that have been eroded into Navajo Sandstone of Jurassic age. The two major troughs, which comprise this rock formation, are 19 meters wide by 36 meters long and 2 meters wide by 16 meters long. Initially, infrequent runoff eroded these troughs along joints within the Navajo Sandstone. After their formation, the drainage basin, which fed rainwater to these troughs, shrank to the point that the runoff became insufficient to contribute to the cutting of these troughs. As a result, the troughs are now almost exclusively eroded by wind as indicated by the orientation of erosional steps and risers cut into the sandstone along their steep walls. These erosional steps and risers are oriented relative to predominate direction of the wind as it is now naturally funneled into and through these troughs.[1][2]

The Wave exposes large, eolian sets of cross-bedded sandstone composed of rhythmic and cyclic alternating grainflow and windripple laminae. The rhythmic and cyclic alternating laminae represent periodic changes in the prevailing winds during the Jurassic as huge sand dunes migrated across a sandy desert. The thin ridges and ribbing seen within The Wave are the result of the differential erosion of rhythmic and cyclic alternating grainflow and windripple laminae within the Navajo Sandstone. These laminae have differing resistance to erosion as they have been differentially cemented according to variations in the grain size of the sand composing them. The soft sandstone, including the ridges and ribbing, of The Wave is fragile. As a result, a person needs to walk carefully to not break the small ridges.[3][4][5]

In places, The Wave exposes deformed laminae within the Navajo Sandstone. These laminae were deformed prior to the lithification of the sand to form sandstone. Judging from their physical characteristics, this deformation likely represents the trampling and churning of these sands by dinosaurs right after their deposition. Dinosaur tracks and the fossil burrows of desert-dwelling arthropods, such as beetles and other insects, have been found within the Navajo Sandstone within the North Coyote Buttes Wilderness Area" - From Wikipedia

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Comments (260)

Hassan Tabrizi حسن on July 6, 2012

Wonderful picture


I added you in my list friends


Janusz Kulik on July 6, 2012

Piękne...,niesamowite miejsce i kolory!!! LIKE 44 pozdrawiam, Janusz

**omidka&Arman** on July 6, 2012

بسیار زیبا L+♥&YS♥

ANGEL, EL ALFA III on July 6, 2012

Impresionante lugar, preciosa foto, me gusta. Like. Saludos desde Madrid, España

Konstantin Khrapko on July 7, 2012


Sofia Prado on July 7, 2012

Um lugar diferente, sensacional.LIKE!!

Xann Armenndy on July 8, 2012

Hola Elena,estupenda foto de esta maravillosa naturaleza.F+L.Saludos

Sergey Brandys on July 9, 2012

Hi, Elena. As always - very nice! Just did, Martian landscape! Sergey

Maziyar Heydari on July 9, 2012

Wonderful Form LIKE 52

Manek Taolin on July 9, 2012

Very nice place


Norbert “bergfreund2… on July 11, 2012

Wunderschönes Foto.


Mit freundlichen Grüßen, Norbert

zw22wz on July 11, 2012

Very beautiful landscape,Nice shot! Like


Angelofruhr on July 11, 2012

What's that??? Amazing nature! like

Greetings from France, Angelika

Alito_di_vento è chi… on July 12, 2012

Beautiful picture! I LIKE, Greetings chiara

Mario Alberto Rodríg… on July 12, 2012

Es un mundo increíble. Muchas felicidades, es toda una obra de arte de la naturaleza y de quien diseñó la toma fotográfica. Un saludo desde Mérida, Yucatán

photosofghosts on July 12, 2012

Lunar landscape, nice colours .... LIKE !
Greetings from Italy, Fabio

kazkun on July 12, 2012

Wonderful shot! Like

Greetings from Japan. kazkun.

C haydeé on July 14, 2012

Excelente fotografía en un lugar precioso. LIKE y FAVORITE

Un saludo y mis mejores deseos, Chaydeé.

Akbar&Armaghan Nouri on July 15, 2012


Ela Vaida on July 16, 2012

Amazing place and very beautiful photo. LIKE & VOTED !

Greetings, Ela.

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Photo details

  • Uploaded on June 30, 2012
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by Elena Omelchenko
    • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
    • Taken on 2012/01/14 03:01:31
    • Exposure: 0.002s (1/640)
    • Focal Length: 29.00mm
    • F/Stop: f/11.000
    • ISO Speed: ISO100
    • Exposure Bias: -2.00 EV
    • No flash