Waterpockets are small erosional basins formed in layers of sedimentary rock. They resemble tidal pools, and with their ripple effects of wind and water they can seem like vestiges of the great sea that once covered the American Southwest, where they are apt to be found. During monsoon season, they act as porous cisterns for birds and animals, and often knobs of grass and chevrons of rushes grow at their verge. Waterpocket Fold, a vast monocline populated with spectacular canyons, cliffs, spires, domes, and monoliths, and which lies within Capitol Reef National Park, is named for the many waterpockets that exist along this stunning and isolated part of southern Utah.

Michael Collier