The Grand Canyon - Origins and Miscellaneous Information

The Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is without a shadow of a doubt one of the world's most famous, if not the most famous of all the natural wonders if . Its sheer size and scale being just as awe inspiring as its beauty - its depth alone reaches a jaw-dropping 6,000 feet in places. To travel from one end of the Canyon to the other requires a river journey of some staggering 277 miles. The distance between the walls of the North and South Rims vary from less than 1/2 a mile to 18 miles, but to travel from one to another requires a car journey of 215 miles, or a perilous hike of 21 miles along arduous trails. The area protected by the National Park is a staggering 1,218,375 acres (1900 square miles) and this by no means encompasses all of it. To put it another way - it's huge! The Grand Canyon has been shaped by the passage of time and the ravages of nature. The main proponent in the formation of the Grand Canyon is the mighty Colorado River - over millions of years it has carried the sand and gravel from the Rocky Mountains and cut through and sculpted the Colorado Plateau, exposing the layers of rock we see today. However, where the exposed rocks range from 1.84 billion years old (at the bottom) to 270 million years old (the cap rock of the rims), the Canyon itself is comparatively new. With geologists generally agreeing that the "carving" of the Canyon occurred over the last 5-6 million years. The first inhabitants of the Grand Canyon arrived from Asia some 11,000 years ago, via the ancient land bridge across the Bearing Strait. The Canyon continued to be inhabited by hunter-gatherers - including the Archaics, Anasazi, Cohonina and the Cerbats, respectively. Today, ancestors of the Cerbats - the Havasupai and Hulapai occupy two separate reservations (independent of the National Park), in the western Canyon.

The Grand Canyon wasn't "discovered" by Europeans until 1540 when Francisco Vasques de Coronado, the Spanish conquistador started to explore the region which was then called New Spain. Somewhat unbelievably the Spanish were less than impressed by its magnificent natural splendour, and deeming it as having no economic value, left it to Franciscan missionaries to explore.In 1821, and after only a brief exploration of the canyon, control of the area passed from the Spaniards to the Mexicans. Then, in 1848 following the war between Mexico and the United States the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed. This treaty resulted in the Grand Canyon, together with the rest of Arizona, New Mexico, Texas and California becoming part of the United States. However it wasn't until 1857 when President James Buchanan called for regional surveys that the Canyon finally started to be officially explored. Incidentally Lieutenant Ives, the survey leader, also considered the Canyon to offer nothing in the way of economic or strategic value . . . View an interactive map of the Grand Canyon by Jacquie Lumb here. View images of the Grand Canyon by Jacquie Lumb and Richard Lumb here Misc images and information: Flora. wildlife, trees,

National Parks: Grand Canyon, Grand Canyon Info, Grand Canyon Map, Walnut Canyon, Walnut Canyon Info, Sunset Crater and Wutapki Monument, Sunset Crater Info, Wupatki Monument Info, Montezuma Castle and Well, Montezuma Castle Info, Montezuma Well Info, Petrified Forest, Petrified Forest Info, Painted Desert Info. Attractions: Apache Trail, Apache Trail Info, Apache Trail Map, Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden, Desert Botanical Garden Info, Meteor Crater, Meteor Crater Info, Monument Valley Tribal Park, Monument Valley Info, Oak Creek Canyon, Oak Creek Info, Slide Rocks State Park, Slide Rocks Info, Taliesin West, Taliesin West, Arboretum at Flagstaff, Arboretum at Flagstaff Info. and Towns and Cities: Flagstaff and envrions, Flagstaff Info, Prescott, Prescott Info, Route 66 Info.

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