Grand Canyon: Facts and Information

Here are some facts about the Grand Canyon.

  • The Grand Canyon is one of the world’s seven natural wonders. It is located within the state of Arizona in the United States and, in addition to being a National Park, it is managed by several Native American tribes.
  • The canyon is 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide in places and is up to 6,000 feet deep in places. It was formed by the Colorado River eroding the rocks over millions of years.
  • The Grand Canyon was established as a forest preserve in 1892 and was designated a National Park in 1919. Over 100 buildings in the park are designated as National Landmarks.
  • The canyon is an important geological site, because of the different ages of the layers of rocks. The rocks at the bottom of the canyon are estimated to be around 2 billion years old.

Grand Canyon

  • Spanish explorers were the first Europeans to see the Grand Canyon in 1540, although Native American tribes have lived in the area for thousands of years. Today, about 5 million people visit every year.
  • The canyon and surrounding park are home to over 1,500 plant species, almost 50 species of reptile, 90 species of mammal and several hundred different bird species.
  • Mule rides into the canyon are so popular that they can be booked over a year ahead of time. Pregnant women and anyone weighing over 200 pounds are not allowed to travel by mule.
  • The Grand Canyon Skywalk was constructed by the Hualapai tribe and is a glass walkway extending 70 feet out over the canyon floor. The Hualapai nation owns almost a million acres of land.
  • Summer temperatures at the canyon range from 50 to 80 degrees C, although the canyon floor is often much hotter. It can snow on the North Rim at any time of the year.
  • An estimated 700 people have died in the Grand Canyon, mostly from falling, dehydration and heart failure. In 1956, 2 airliners collided over the canyon, killing over 100 people.

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