Smith Rock Geologic Wonderland

The dramatic appearance of the park area is a testament to the
cumulative force of vulcanism and the erosive power of running
water. Millions of years ago this area was a major center of
volcanic activity. After a period of localized eruptions, lava flows
entered the canyon and crowded the ancestral river into the
flanks of the main volcanic structure. Forced to establish a new
channel, the Crooked River eventually eroded the interior of
the volcanic vent. The wondrous and multicolored formations
are composed of rock known as "welded tuff "—volcanic ash
erupted under conditions of extreme heat and pressure.


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