Located In the state of Arizona in the United States, The Grand Canyon is a steep-sided canyon known for its visually overwhelming size, colorful and intricate landscape and significance in American pop culture.
Despite conflicting arguments over the origin and geologic processes responsible for the canyon’s formation recent evidence eludes that the Colorado River and its tributaries are the primary cause. Basically for at least 17 million years the Colorado River and its tributaries have cut through layers and layers of rock. This erosion coupled with the uplift of the Colorado Plateau has resulted in the Grand Canyon’s current configuration.
- The Grand Canyon National Park was established in 1919 after President Woodrow Wilson signed an Act of Congress that had been opposed by miners for over 10 years.
- Despite being the most popular gorge in pop culture, the Grand Canyon is neither the longest nor the deepest canyon in existence. That title belongs to Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon in the Himalayas.
- It has pink snakes. The most common snake in the Grand Canyon National Park is the pink rattlesnake which matches the local rocks hue.
- It gave rise to the FAA. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) was formed as a response to frequent plane collisions directly over the canyon in the late 1950’s
- Over 3000 years ago, the ancient Pueblo Indians inhabited the canyon. They caves provided shelter and storage space for their grains. The canyon was also considered a sacred site to them as they made pilgrimages to it.
Fun Things to do in The Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon National Park offers families, individuals and groups an assortment of fun activities they can participate in. They include
- Helicopter tours over the canyon rim which offer expansive views of one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
- Raft the Grand Canyon! This is one of the more exhilarating activities available as it offers tourists an opportunity to raft the Colorado River which snakes its way along the canyon.
- Camping and Hiking. Sleeping at a hotel isn’t the recommended accommodation on your trip to the canyon. Hiking through the trails and camping out in the wild should be top of anybody’s list.
- Biking and auto touring. The canyon offers a variety of tough terrain for all those interested in biking and driving along the canyon.
- Photography. With its expansive views and endless land marks such as the Havasupai falls, the Grand Canyon provides an ideal shooting location for all photo enthusiasts.
How to get there
- By Air- fly to Flagstaff’s Pulliam Field which is the nearest commercial airport to the Grand Canyon. Daily flights are offered by numerous air tour companies.
- By road- Access the southern rim of the park via either the Arizona route 64 or US 89. This is possible via both private vehicles and commercial buses.
- By train- The Grand Canyon Railway avails a ride from the town of Williams which is accessible from Chicago and Los Angles. It is important to note that the train ride does not offer views of the canyon and will take twice the time driving will get you there.