Gravity-Defying Wonders: Rocks in Precarious Equilibrium Baffle Researchers

They are among nature’s most in incredible wonders – huge, delicately balanced rocks that look like they’re about to topple over at any moment. While some of the items in the selection we have below may live for thousands of years, one may assume that others of them will have a somewhat shorter lifespan.  Are you ready to rock and roll?

And scroll down for our selection below:

Balanced Rock Park, USA

This wind-carved rock, which is almost 15m tall and 40 tons in weight, perches precariously on a pedestal that is just 1m by 43cm. No, we wouldn’t want to stand there for too long.

Hoodoos in Ah-Shi-Sle-Pah Wilderness

At first glance this may look like a collection of fungi but the rainbows give the game away on the scale of these formations. These towering rock spires, sometimes known as Hoodoos, develop in dry deserts. Usually made of a much tougher rock, the balancing stone on top shields the column from the elements.

Mushroom Rock State Park, USA

Located in the Smoky Hills region of north-central Kansas, this park is noted for its mushroom-like rock formations, also a kind of hoodoo. Even while rocks are inherently fascinating to geologists, anybody might look at them and wonder if they were truly produced naturally or if another living force was at work.

Kannesteinen rock, Norway

Just metres from the shoreline, a statue of a whale’s fin provides a timely reminder of the great creatures that roam the oceans in these latitudes. However, this wasn’t manually carved. Nature occasionally surpasses human creations. This lovely rock, shaped by the water, is proof of that.

Ténéré desert rock

The Ténéré, one of the less well-known deserts in the world, spans a sizable portion of the Sahara — over 400,000 square kilometers — from northeastern Niger to western Chad. It’s also one of the least welcoming, with daily highs of 42°C.

Hot, dusty winds known as the harmattan blow year round and are partly responsible for helping to create unique rock features such as these.

El Capitan (the other one), USA

Mention El Capitan and you can be forgiven for thinking of the huge 1,000m walls of Yosemite National Park. It’s fair to say, the bigger El Cap is the better known chunk of rock.

But small is beautiful and the rocks of Guadalupe Mountains national park, Texas are no less captivating, especially this precariously balanced one.

Grand Staircase, USA

Utah’s Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument is a window into time, a geologic sampler with a huge variety of rock formations and features. The Grand Staircase is a geological feature that spans ages, and this finely balanced rock is a part of it. There is just one query. How did the rock originally end up there?

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