Mission Santa Barbara

Mission Santa Barbara, also known as Santa Barbara Mission, is a Spanish mission founded by the Franciscan order near present-day Santa Barbara, California. It was founded on December 4, 1786 as the tenth mission for the religious conversion of the indigenous local Chumash-Barbareño tribe of Native American people.

Mission Santa Barbara

Carvings at Stone Mountain

The Confederate Memorial Carving on Stone Mountain depicts three Confederate leaders of the Civil War, President Jefferson Davis and Generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson (and their favorite horses, “Blackjack”, “Traveller”, and “Little Sorrel”, respectively).

The entire carved surface measures 1.57 acres (6,400 m2). The carving of the three men towers 400 feet (120 m) above the ground, measures 76 by 158 feet (23 by 48 m), and is recessed 42 feet (13 m) into the mountain. The deepest point of the carving is at Lee’s right elbow, which is 12 feet (3.7 m) to the mountain’s surface.

Carvings at Stone Mountain

The Half Face of a Mountain

At the head of the valley in Yosemite National Park, as if on a pedestal, stands Half Dome, the most colossal and recognizable rock monument in the Sierra Nevada, smoothly rounded on three sides and a sheer vertical face on the fourth. Half Dome, which stands nearly 8,800 feet above sea level, is composed of quartz monzonite, an igneous rock that solidified several thousand feet within the Earth. Half Dome, is the remains of a magma chamber that cooled slowly and crystallized beneath the Earth’s surface. The solidified magma chamber was then exposed and cut in half by erosion, therefore leading to the geographic name Half Dome.

The Half Face of a Mountain

A Closeup of Half Dome

One of the most recognized natural rocks in the world, Half Dome in Yosemite National Park is even more impressive up close when viewed from Glacier Point.

Half Dome may now be ascended in several different ways. Thousands of hikers reach the top each year by following an 8.5 mi (13.7 km) trail from the valley floor. After a rigorous 2 mi (3.2 km) approach, including several hundred feet of granite stairs, the final pitch up the peak’s steep but somewhat rounded east face is ascended with the aid of a pair of post-mounted braided steel cables.

A Closeup of Half Dome

Eye Level View of Half Dome

Half Dome is a granite dome at the eastern end of Yosemite Valley in Yosemite National Park, California. It is a well-known rock formation in the park, named for its distinct shape. One side is a sheer face while the other three sides are smooth and round, making it appear like a dome cut in half. The granite crest rises more than 4,737 ft (1,444 m) above the valley floor and stands nearly 8,800 feet above sea level

Half Dome as viewed from Glacier Point (approximately 7,200 feet height).

Eye Level View of Half Dome