Cobra Arch

Categories: Hiking

Cobra Arch is a remote seven mile cross country hike in the Paria Wilderness. Access to the area requires a 4 wheel drive vehicle. From a certain angle it really does resemble a Cobra, even down to the texture of scales. The hike is very sandy so it’s a strenuous seven miles and is certainly not recommended during summer months. Along the way i came across some “brain” sandstone and some crazy formations that resemble a petrified underwater landslide. Until that day i had never seen anything like it. Enjoy the pictures.

The first interesting place i came to was this “brain stone” area interspersed with sand dunes and water pools.

This is what rocks look like when they aren’t trampled by cows and people. Buckskin Gulch cuts across the center and in the distance is the White Pocket area.

A lone Juniper sat in the center of this sand dune.

All these lichen looking splotches on the rock seem to be concretions that never formed hard layers of shells, so they are being eroded away with the rest of the rock face.

Hmm, looks like i might be getting close to Jabba’s palace.

A breaking wave of that famous Paria Sandstone.

I wanted some pictures of that Juniper tree but i didn’t want to mess up the pristine sand so walked around the back through that half corkscrew of a little slot.

A moki marble birthing ground.

This place was just crazy. It clearly looks like mud or something was flowing over the top of the other rocks. This was just in one specific place, and above what you can see it was immediately buried under sand and plants.

This was fun and sometimes tricky to traverse.

A nice water source.

Looks like the back of a double wide centipede.

After leaving the brain coral looking area I came to a fantastic slick rock are of paper thin intersecting cross bedding.

Don’t touch these, they are just as delicate as they look.

Looks like a dinosaur head

The same hoodoo from head-on

Finally, COBRA ARCH!

From the back

Some of the rocks in the area look like what you would see over at White Pocket.

There’s plenty of room to stand under it

From the top

From the north side

The whole area where Cobra Arch lies is really cool.

On the way back I passed a cliff I had not noticed on the way in. A recent rockslide had exposed a clean cream face of rock with an amazing design formally hidden.

It looked just like the strokes of a paintbrush.

Another rockface where too much paint had been applied to the canvas.

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