Petrified Forest National Park Environmental Factors

The clarity of the high, dry air over the Painted Desert region is only occasionally interrupted by weather shifts and environmental factors. Wind plays a large role in shaping the terrain but does not often decrease visibility. With an annual rainfall of only 8-12 inches, moisture seldom interrupts the majestic vistas. Thunderstorms are most commmon during the monsoon seaason from July to September. Winters can bring cold temperatures and snow.

Summers by contrast are often hot and dry, punctuated by occasional thunderstorms While automobile traffic and the passage of trains on the Santa Fe line can be heard from the road, the backcountry is still a refuge of profound silence. This relative isolation has also helped to preserve the night skies and the air quality within the park.

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Featured Park
Rising above a scene rich with extraordinary wildlife, pristine lakes, and alpine terrain, the Teton Range stands monument to the people who fought to protect it. These are mountains of the imagination. Mountains that led to the creation of Grand Teton National Park where you can explore over two hundred miles of trails, float the Snake River or enjoy the serenity of this remarkable place.
Featured Wildlife
The pika is a close relative of the rabbits and hares, with two upper incisors on each side of the jaw, one behind the other. Being rock-gray in color, pikas are seldom seen until their shrill, metallic call reveals their presence.