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|Grand Canyon National Park|
Grand Canyon from the South Rim at dawn
|Location||Coconino and Mohave counties, Arizona, United States|
|Nearest city|| Fredonia, Arizona (North Rim)|
Tusayan, Arizona (South Rim)
|Area||1,217,262 acres (4,926.08 km2)|
|Established||February 26, 1919|
|Governing body||National Park Service|
|Website|| Official website |
|UNESCO World Heritage Site|
|Criteria||Natural: vii, viii, ix, x|
|Inscription||1979 (3rd Session)|
Grand Canyon National Park, located in northwestern Arizona, is the 15th site in the United States to have been named a national park. The park's central feature is the Grand Canyon, a gorge of the Colorado River, which is often considered one of the Wonders of the World. The park, which covers 1,217,262 acres (1,901.972 sq mi; 4,926.08 km2) of unincorporated area in Coconino and Mohave counties, received more than six million recreational visitors in 2017, which is the second highest count of all American national parks after Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The Grand Canyon was designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1979. The park celebrated its 100th anniversary on February 26, 2019.
Arizona is a state in the southwestern region of the United States. It is also part of the Western and the Mountain states. It is the sixth largest and the 14th most populous of the 50 states. Its capital and largest city is Phoenix. Arizona shares the Four Corners region with Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico; its other neighboring states are Nevada and California to the west and the Mexican states of Sonora and Baja California to the south and southwest.
A national park is a park in use for conservation purposes. Often it is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or owns. Although individual nations designate their own national parks differently, there is a common idea: the conservation of 'wild nature' for posterity and as a symbol of national pride.
The Grand Canyon is a steep-sided canyon carved by the Colorado River in Arizona, United States. The Grand Canyon is 277 miles (446 km) long, up to 18 miles (29 km) wide and attains a depth of over a mile.
"Grand Canyon" was officially designated a national park on February 26, 1919,though the landmark had been well known to Americans for over thirty years prior. In 1903, President Theodore Roosevelt visited the site and said: "The Grand Canyon fills me with awe. It is beyond comparison—beyond description; absolutely unparalleled through-out the wide world... Let this great wonder of nature remain as it now is. Do nothing to mar its grandeur, sublimity and loveliness. You cannot improve on it. But what you can do is to keep it for your children, your children's children, and all who come after you, as the one great sight which every American should see."
Theodore Roosevelt Jr. was an American statesman, politician, conservationist, naturalist, and writer who served as the 26th president of the United States from 1901 to 1909. He previously served as the 25th vice president of the United States from March to September 1901 and as the 33rd governor of New York from 1899 to 1900. As a leader of the Republican Party during this time, he became a driving force for the Progressive Era in the United States in the early 20th century. His face is depicted on Mount Rushmore, alongside those of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln. In polls of historians and political scientists, Roosevelt is generally ranked as one of the five best presidents.
Despite Roosevelt's enthusiasm and strong interest in preserving land for public use, the Grand Canyon was not immediately designated as a national park. The first bill to establish Grand Canyon National Park was introduced in 1882 by then-Senator Benjamin Harrison, which would have established Grand Canyon as the third national park in the United States, after Yellowstone and Mackinac. Harrison unsuccessfully reintroduced his bill in 1883 and 1886; after his election to the presidency, he established the Grand Canyon Forest Reserve in 1893. Theodore Roosevelt created the Grand Canyon Game Preserve by proclamation on 28 November 1906,and the Grand Canyon National Monument in 1908. Further Senate bills to establish the site as a national park were introduced and defeated in 1910 and 1911, before the Grand Canyon National Park Act was finally signed by President Woodrow Wilson in 1919. The National Park Service, established in 1916, assumed administration of the park.
The conservation movement, also known as nature conservation, is a political, environmental, and social movement that seeks to protect natural resources including animal and plant species as well as their habitat for the future.
Benjamin Harrison was an American politician and lawyer who served as the 23rd president of the United States from 1889 to 1893. He was a grandson of the ninth president, William Henry Harrison, creating the only grandfather–grandson duo to have held the office. He was also a great-grandson of Benjamin Harrison V, a founding father. Before ascending to the presidency, Harrison had established himself as a prominent local attorney, Presbyterian church leader, and politician in Indianapolis, Indiana. During the American Civil War, he served in the Union Army as a colonel, and was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as a brevet brigadier general of volunteers in 1865. Harrison unsuccessfully ran for governor of Indiana in 1876. The Indiana General Assembly elected Harrison to a six-year term in the U.S. Senate, where he served from 1881 to 1887.
Yellowstone National Park is an American national park located in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho. It was established by the U.S. Congress and signed into law by President Ulysses S. Grant on March 1, 1872. Yellowstone was the first national park in the U.S. and is also widely held to be the first national park in the world. The park is known for its wildlife and its many geothermal features, especially Old Faithful geyser, one of its most popular features. It has many types of ecosystems, but the subalpine forest is the most abundant. It is part of the South Central Rockies forests ecoregion.
The creation of the park was an early success of the conservation movement. Its national park status may have helped thwart proposals to dam the Colorado River within its boundaries. (Later, the Glen Canyon Dam would be built upriver.) In 1975, the former Marble Canyon National Monument, which followed the Colorado River northeast from the Grand Canyon to Lee's Ferry, was made part of Grand Canyon National Park. In 1979, UNESCO declared the park a World Heritage Site. The 1987 the National Parks Overflights Actfound that "Noise associated with aircraft overflights at the Grand Canyon National Park is causing a significant adverse effect on the natural quiet and experience of the park and current aircraft operations at the Grand Canyon National Park have raised serious concerns regarding public safety, including concerns regarding the safety of park users." In 2010, Grand Canyon National Park was honored with its own coin under the America the Beautiful Quarters program.
Conservation in the United States can be traced back to the 19th century with the formation of the first National Park. Conservation generally refers to the act of consciously and efficiently using land and/or its natural resources. This can be in the form of setting aside tracts of land for protection from hunting or urban development, or it can take the form of using less resources such as metal, water, or coal. Usually, this process of conservation occurs through or after legislation on local or national levels is passed.
Glen Canyon Dam is a concrete arch-gravity dam on the Colorado River in northern Arizona, United States, near the town of Page. The 710-foot (220 m) high dam was built by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) from 1956 to 1966 and forms Lake Powell, one of the largest man-made reservoirs in the U.S. with a capacity of 27 million acre feet (33 km3). The dam is named for Glen Canyon, a series of deep sandstone gorges now flooded by the reservoir; Lake Powell is named for John Wesley Powell, who in 1869 led the first expedition to traverse the Colorado's Grand Canyon by boat.
Marble Canyon is the section of the Colorado River canyon in northern Arizona from Lee's Ferry to the confluence with the Little Colorado River, which marks the beginning of the Grand Canyon.
The Grand Canyon, including its extensive system of tributary canyons, is valued for its combination of size, depth, and exposed layers of colorful rocks dating back to Precambrian times. The canyon itself was created by the incision of the Colorado River and its tributaries after the Colorado Plateau was uplifted, causing the Colorado River system to develop along its present path.
The Precambrian is the earliest part of Earth's history, set before the current Phanerozoic Eon. The Precambrian is so named because it preceded the Cambrian, the first period of the Phanerozoic eon, which is named after Cambria, the Latinised name for Wales, where rocks from this age were first studied. The Precambrian accounts for 88% of the Earth's geologic time.
The Colorado Plateau, also known as the Colorado Plateau Province, is a physiographic and desert region of the Intermontane Plateaus, roughly centered on the Four Corners region of the southwestern United States. This province covers an area of 336,700 km2 (130,000 mi2) within western Colorado, northwestern New Mexico, southern and eastern Utah, and northern Arizona. About 90% of the area is drained by the Colorado River and its main tributaries: the Green, San Juan, and Little Colorado. Most of the remainder of the plateau is drained by the Rio Grande and its tributaries.
The primary public areas of the park are the South and North Rims, and adjacent areas of the canyon itself. The rest of the park is extremely rugged and remote, although many places are accessible by pack trail and backcountry roads. The South Rim is more accessible than the North Rim, and accounts for 90% of park visitation.
The park headquarters are at Grand Canyon Village, not far from the south entrance to the park, near one of the most popular viewpoints.
Most visitors to the park come to the South Rim, arriving on Arizona State Route 64. The highway enters the park through the South Entrance, near Tusayan, Arizona, and heads eastward, leaving the park through the East Entrance. [ citation needed ]Interstate 40 provides access to the area from the south. From the north, U.S. Route 89 connects Utah, Colorado, and the North Rim to the South Rim. Overall, some 30 miles of the South Rim are accessible by road.
The North Rim area of the park located on the Kaibab Plateau and Walhalla Plateau, directly across the Grand Canyon from the principal visitor areas on the South Rim. The North Rim's principal visitor areas are centered around Bright Angel Point. The North Rim is higher in elevation than the South Rim, at over 8,000 feet (2,400 m) of elevation. Because it is so much higher than the South Rim, it is closed from December 1 through May 15 each year, due to the enhanced snowfall at elevation. Visitor services are closed or limited in scope after October 15. Driving time from the South Rim to the North Rim is about 4.5 hours, over 220 miles (350 km).
Grand Canyon Village is the primary visitor services area in the park. It is a full-service community, including lodging, fuel, food, souvenirs, a hospital, churches, and access to trails and guided walks and talks.
Several lodging facilities are available along the South Rim. Hotels and other lodging include: El Tovar, Bright Angel Lodge, Kachina Lodge, Thunderbird Lodge, and Maswik Lodge, all of which are located in the village area, and Phantom Ranch, located on the canyon floor. There is also an RV Park named Trailer Village. All of these facilities are managed by Xanterra Parks & Resorts, while the Yavapai Lodge (also in the village area) is managed by Delaware North.
On the North Rim there is the historic Grand Canyon Lodgemanaged by Forever Resorts and a campground near the lodge, managed by the national park staff.
According to the Köppen climate classification system, Grand Canyon National Park has five climate zones; Cold Semi-Arid (BSk), Humid Continental Dry Cool Summer (Dsb), Humid Continental Dry Warm Summer (Dsa), Warm Summer Mediterranean (Csb), and Hot Summer Mediterranean (Csa). The plant hardiness zone at Grand Canyon Visitor Center is 7a with an average annual extreme minimum temperature of 3.3 °F (-15.9 °C) .
|Climate data for Grand Canyon Visitor Center, Grand Canyon Village, Grand Canyon National Park, Coconino County, AZ (1981 – 2010 averages).|
|Average high °F (°C)||46.6|
|Daily mean °F (°C)||35.6|
|Average low °F (°C)||24.5|
|Average precipitation inches (mm)||1.42|
|Average relative humidity (%)||47.1||44.8||38.7||30.4||24.0||19.2||26.2||36.0||31.9||33.2||39.8||46.4||34.8|
|Source: PRISM Climate Group|
|Average Dew Point °F||17.4||18.8||20.6||21.0||23.8||26.2||38.3||44.0||35.4||26.5||20.3||16.6||25.8|
|Average Dew Point °C||-8.1||-7.3||-6.3||-6.1||-4.6||-3.2||3.5||6.7||1.9||-3.1||-6.5||-8.6||-3.4|
On the North Rim there are few roads, however, there are some notable vehicle accessible lookout points including Point Imperial, Roosevelt Point, and Cape Royal. Mule rides are also available that go to a variety of places including several thousand feet down into the canyon.
Many visitors to the North Rim choose to make use of the variety of hiking trails including the Widforss Trail, Uncle Jim's Trail, the Transept Trail, and the North Kaibab Trail, the latter of which can be followed all the way down to the Colorado River, and to across to the South Kaibab Trail and the Bright Angel Trail, which continue up to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.
The Toroweap Overlook is located in the western part of the park on the North Rim. Access is via unpaved roads off Route 389 west of Fredonia, Arizona. The roads lead through Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument and to the overlook.
A variety of activities at the South Rim cater to park visitors. A driving tour (35 miles (56 km)) along the South Rim is split into two segments. The western drive to Hermit's Point is 8 miles (13 km) with several overlooks along the way, including Mohave Point, Hopi Point, and the Powell Memorial. From March to December, access to Hermit's Rest is restricted to the free shuttle provided by the Park Service. The eastern portion to Desert View is 25 miles (40 km), and is open to private vehicles year round.
Walking tours include the Rim Trail, which runs west from the Pipe Creek viewpoint for about 8 miles (13 km) of paved road, followed by 7 miles (11 km) unpaved to Hermit's Rest. Hikes can begin almost anywhere along this trail, and a shuttle can return hikers to their point of origin. Mather Point, the first view most people reach when entering from the South Entrance, is a popular place to begin.
Private canyon flyovers are provided by helicopters and small airplanes out of Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Grand Canyon National Park Airport. Due to a crash in the 1990s, scenic flights are no longer allowed to fly within 1,500 feet (460 m) of the rim within the Grand Canyon National Park. Flights within the canyon are still available outside of park boundaries.
The US government had halted development of a 1.6 million acres area including the national park from 1966 to 2009, during the Bennett Freeze, because of an ownership dispute between Hopi and Navajo.
The Grand Canyon Association (GCA) is the National Park Service's official nonprofit partner. It raises private funds to benefit Grand Canyon National Park by operating retail shops and visitor centers within the park, and providing educational opportunities about the natural and cultural history of the region.
At 1.6 million acres the Kaibab National Forest borders both the north and south rims of the Grand Canyon, in north-central Arizona. It is divided into three major sections: the North Kaibab Ranger District and the South Kaibab and are managed by the United States Forest Service. The South Kaibab is further divided into two districts, the Tusayan Ranger District, and the Williams Ranger District. The Grand Canyon is a natural boundary between the North Kaibab and the South Kaibab. The South Kaibab covers 1,422 square miles (3,680 km2) and the North Kaibab stretches over 1,010 square miles (2,600 km2). Elevations vary on the forest from 5,500 feet in the southwest corner to 10,418 feet at the summit of Kendrick Peak on the Williams Ranger District. The forest as a whole is headquartered in Williams.
Walnut Canyon National Monument is a United States National Monument located about 10 mi (16 km) southeast of downtown Flagstaff, Arizona, near Interstate 40. The canyon rim elevation is 6,690 ft (2,040 m); the canyon's floor is 350 ft lower. A 0.9 mi (1.4 km) long loop trail descends 185 ft (56 m) into the canyon passing 25 cliff dwelling rooms constructed by the Sinagua, a pre-Columbian cultural group that lived in Walnut Canyon from about 1100 to 1250 CE. Other contemporary habitations of the Sinagua people are preserved in the nearby Tuzigoot and Montezuma Castle national monuments.
The South Kaibab Trail is a hiking trail in Grand Canyon National Park, located in the U.S. state of Arizona. Unlike the Bright Angel Trail which also begins at the south rim of the Grand Canyon and leads to the Colorado River, the South Kaibab Trail follows a ridge out to Skeleton Point allowing for 360-degree views of the canyon.
The Bright Angel Trail is a hiking trail located in Grand Canyon National Park in the U.S. state of Arizona.
The known human history of the Grand Canyon area stretches back 10,500 years, when the first evidence of human presence in the area is found. Native Americans have inhabited the Grand Canyon and the area now covered by Grand Canyon National Park for at least the last 4,000 of those years. Ancestral Pueblo peoples, first as the Basketmaker culture and later as the more familiar Pueblo people, developed from the Desert Culture as they became less nomadic and more dependent on agriculture. A similar culture, the Cinchona, also lived in the canyon area. Drought in the late 13th century likely caused both groups to move on. Other people followed, including the Paiute, Cerbat, and the Navajo, only to be later forced onto reservations by the United States Government.
Phantom Ranch is a lodge inside Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona. It is on the north side of the Colorado River near its confluence with Bright Angel Creek and Phantom Creek. Built in 1922, Phantom Ranch is a member of Historic Hotels of America, the official program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
The Arizona Strip is the part of Arizona lying north of the Colorado River. The difficulty of crossing the Grand Canyon causes this region to have more physical and cultural connections with southern Utah and Nevada than with the rest of Arizona. The largest settlements in the Strip are Colorado City and Fredonia.
State Route 67 is a 43.4 mi (69.8 km) long, north–south state highway in northern Arizona. Also called the Kaibab Plateau – North Rim Parkway, SR 67 is the sole road that links U.S. Route 89A at Jacob Lake to the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. Along the route, the road heads through the national park as well as Kaibab National Forest and is surrounded by evergreen trees. The section inside the national park is maintained by the National Park Service (NPS), whereas the section north of the entrance, completely within Kaibab National Forest, is owned by the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT). The road was built in the late 1920s and improved through the 1930s. In 1941, the road received its number, and was given its designation as the parkway in the 1980s. The parkway has received designations as a National Forest Scenic Byway as well as a National Scenic Byway.
The North Kaibab Trail is a hiking trail in the North Rim side of the Grand Canyon, in Grand Canyon National Park, located in the U.S. state of Arizona.
The Tonto Trail is a hiking trail on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon in Grand Canyon National Park, located in the U.S. state of Arizona.
The River Trail is a hiking trail in Grand Canyon National Park, located in the U.S. state of Arizona. This trail connects the end of the Bright Angel Trail with Phantom Ranch and the South Kaibab Trail.
The Clear Creek Trail is a hiking trail on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon National Park, located in the U.S. state of Arizona.
The Tanner Trail is a hiking trail located on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon National Park, located in the U.S. state of Arizona. The trailhead is located at Lipan Point, a prominent lookout located to the east of the Grand Canyon Village and it ends at the Colorado River at Tanner Rapids.
Kanab Creek Wilderness is a 75,300-acre (305 km2) wilderness area located along the Coconino/Mohave County line in the U.S. state of Arizona, approximately 30 miles (48 km) south of Fredonia. 68,600 acres (278 km2) of the Wilderness are located in the North Kaibab Ranger District of the Kaibab National Forest, the remaining 6,700 acres (27 km2) are administered by the Arizona Bureau of Land Management.
Zion National Park is an American national park located in southwestern Utah near the town of Springdale. A prominent feature of the 229-square-mile (590 km2) park is Zion Canyon, which is 15 miles (24 km) long and up to 2,640 ft (800 m) deep. The canyon walls are reddish and tan-colored Navajo Sandstone eroded by the North Fork of the Virgin River. The lowest point in the park is 3,666 ft (1,117 m) at Coalpits Wash and the highest peak is 8,726 ft (2,660 m) at Horse Ranch Mountain. Located at the junction of the Colorado Plateau, Great Basin, and Mojave Desert regions, the park has a unique geography and a variety of life zones that allow for unusual plant and animal diversity. Numerous plant species as well as 289 species of birds, 75 mammals, and 32 reptiles inhabit the park's four life zones: desert, riparian, woodland, and coniferous forest. Zion National Park includes mountains, canyons, buttes, mesas, monoliths, rivers, slot canyons, and natural arches.
North Rim is a populated place in Coconino County, Arizona, United States. It is located adjacent to the Grand Canyon within Grand Canyon National Park.
The Great Western Trail is a north-south long distance multiple use route which runs from Canada to Mexico through five western states in the United States. The trail has access for both motorized and non-motorized users and traverses 4,455 miles (7,170 km) through Arizona, Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana. Designated a National Millennium Trail.
Toroweap Overlook is a viewpoint within the Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona, United States. It is located in a remote area on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, 55 miles (89 km) west of the North Rim Headquarters. The overlook is the only viewpoint in the National Park from where the Colorado River can be seen vertically below. The overlook stands 3,000 feet (910 m) above the river.
The Grand Canyon National Park Quarter is the fourth coin of 2010 in the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program. The reverse image features a view of the granaries above the Nankoweap Delta in Marble Canyon near the Colorado River.