Although the desert is defined by aridity, intense rain events formed the landscape. Sudden pulses of water from monsoon events carve the stone and sand into ridge and canyon.
The slot canyon is a fascinating place to hike, but you would not want to be caught here during a desert cloudburst. Floodwaters carry a high sediment load within a small surface area; moving mud and tumbling boulders scrape away at the canyon bottom, depositing the debris in the wash below.
Canyon walls reveal banks undercut by the propulsive, abrasive mix of water and sediment. Look at the canyon floor, and you may see the current's pattern etched upon the sometimes-streambed.