Eroded Red Rock Strata - Stock Image

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Sedona's eroded red rock strata - Schnebly Hill Formation Sandstone - in sunrise light. The rock was layed down 280 million years ago in flat horizontal layers, interspersed with thin layers of limestone. The flat strata and the limestone indicate that the rock formed under water. Microscopic examination of the sanstone shows that it is frosted, worn and consistent in size - which indicates wind-blown origin. The conclusion is that the region was subject to periodic incursions of the sea, with the resulting sand dune deposits being reworked by the wind into horizontal layers. The region is located at the base of the Mogollon Rim escarpment. The rim erodes, leaving behind spectacular canyons, buttes and hoodoos. The red color is due to the presence of hematite (iron oxide, or rust) that stains the the Schnebly Hill Sandstone. Sedona, Arizona, 2013.

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