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Utah DNR holds 'Arch Madness' competition to decide the state's best geological formation

Posted at 6:53 PM, Mar 20, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-20 21:10:09-04

While sports fans predict and follow the NCAA basketball tournament, a.k.a. March Madness, fans of Utah's rock formations can participate in a bracket challenge from the Utah Geological Survey called "Arch Madness."

The contest "pit[s] some of Utah’s well-known and lesser-known natural arches and bridges against each other for geologic superiority," the agency wrote on its website.

The first round, with 64 contenders, began Thursday and remains open through Saturday. Click here to vote.

The round of 32 is open for online voting Monday-Tuesday (March 22-23), followed by the "Seismic Sixteen" March 26-28, the "Eroded Eight" March 29-30, the "Faunal Four" April 2-3, and the championship matchup April 5.

The UGS, which is part of the Utah Department of Natural Resources, said the winners will be solely determined by the public's participation.

There is also a PDF bracket for those who want to fill one out by hand.

The competition includes many arches within Utah's famed national and state parks, but many others throughout the state's public lands. And while most are in southern Utah, there are a few near in the Salt Lake and Tooele area, and even some in Cache and Box Elder counties.