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gem icon Mammoth Hot Springs Terraces [Suggest Edits]

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Description

The Mammoth Terraces are some of the best examples of travertine terracing in the world. This unique, fountain-like feature is a result of the mineral enriched waters often found in hot spring formations. The underlying rock in the area is composed of limestone, a weak, calcium-carbonate-rich rock type. As hot water from the springs rises through the limestone, it dissolves the minerals in the rock. Once the water reaches the surface and begins to cool, carbon dioxide is released and calcium carbonate is deposited, forming the terraced structures seen today.

Made up of travertine, a calcium-carbonate heavy rock, the terraces are one of Yellowstone's most beautiful and delicate features. Due to the rapid deposition of new travertine, and the constant wear of weak limestone, the features in this area of the park are constantly and rapidly changing. The terraces may look completely different the next time you visit!

Short Walk: A series of boardwalks connects the parking area to the terraces, though flights of stairs may limit access.

Family Friendly: With easy access and surprising shapes, young visitors will love looking at these geothermal features.

Gem Type: Geothermal Hotspot

Shared by:
Mikhaila Redovian

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Shared by Mikhaila Redovian on May 12, 2016. All Page Views: 1,598. Last Month: 23.