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The giant pink granite boulders at Elephant Rocks State Park were formed about 1.5 billion years ago during the Precambrian era after magma pushed towards the surface. As the magma cooled it became granite. Vertical fractures in the stone occurred from the cooling and vertical uplift of the St. Francois Mountains. The overlaying surface layers were eventually removed through erosion, exposing the rock formations.
The large boulder pictured in the center background, referred to as “Dumbo," is estimated to weight 680 tons. Elephant Rocks State Park, established in 1978 includes a one-mile interpretive trail that is handicapped accessible that includes braille interpretive signage.
The granite in the area has been quarried since 1869. Stone from the Elephant Rocks area quarries were used for the St. Louis City Hall and the St. Louis Eads Bridge piers.
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- © 2015 John L. Dengler
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America Elephant Rocks State Park GEOLOGIC AGE Iron County Ironton Missouri Missouri Department of Natural Resources Missouri Red monument stone Missouri State Parks National Park Service North America Pilot Knob Pre-Cambrian Precambrian Proterozoic Saint Francois Mountains St. Francis Mountains U.S. US USA United States United States of America braille trail granite handicapped accessible hike human humans igneous interpretive interpretive trail landscape landscapes natural resources nature no people nobody outdoor outdoor recreation outdoors outside park ranger people person protected land recreation rock rocks and minerals scenery scenic sports & recreation tor trail trails travel travel destination traveled traveling travelled vertical