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Joshua Tree National Park > Roadside Interpretations

Rock Piles

This rock pile was once a solid mass of granite- monzogranite. It formed 85 million years ago from magma crystallizing some 15 miles below the existing ground level. Earthquakes stressed and cracked the rock. Mountain uplifting moved the rock closer to the Earth's surface.

Groundwater seeped into the cracks, rounding and shaping the rock blocks. Further uplifting and erosion exposed the rock above ground. Once exposed, weathering and erosion continued the sculpting and breakdown of the granite, making the rock into its present form.

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also see:
Geology tour road
Granitic rock formation in the Mojave Desert


Rock piles
ecology: wildlife - plants - geography: places - MAPS - map/sat - roads & trails: route 66 - old west - communities - weather - book store
ghost towns - gold mines - parks & public lands: wilderness - native culture - history - geology: natural features - glossary - comments
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