Getaway to the Gorges

If you want a break – away from the hustle-bustle of Vegas – then just drive for an hour and a half into the gorges of the arid Arizona desert. The Grand Canyon is a 190 km drive from Las Vegas and near to places like Phoenix and Denver.

The Canyon is a perfect vacation spot for tourists visiting the U.S. Located in the desert of Utah, it is a steep-sided gorge carved by the Colorado River. It is near the Hoover Dam which is a major source of water supply to the entire Arizona desert.

The Canyon was believed to be the home to many Native Americans called the Pueblo.

It was believed to be cut across by the Colorado River 17 million years ago. It was a result of erosion that took place and carved across the plateau. It is 446 km long, its width ranges from 6.4 to 29 km and attains a depth of 6000 feet.

Colorado River
The gorge is beautiful with its picturesque location.  The place is a habitat for many wild animals and snakes like Raccoon, weasel, bobcat, gray fox and the mountain lion. The Grand Canyon National Park is one of the first of its kind in the United States.

Grand Canyon National Park
There are two rims (North and South) located on the top of the Canyon.  The Lipan Point is the best place to view the mountain. It can also be viewed from the Tuweep Overlook which is situated 3000 vertical feet above the Colorado River and is about 50 miles downriver from the Southern Rim. Apart from sightseeing, rafting in the Colorado River, hiking, helicopter tour and camping are some activities which are popular.

Colorado River rafting
Tourists can buy gems and precious stones that have been carved out from the rocks and are sold in the store nearby. The library there contains images and history about Grand Canyon.

If one wishes to spend more time, the Kaibab National Forest allows some camping activities in the North Rim of the Canyon. One can also travel in the Coconino Canyon Train which is a one and a half hour ride through the national park and the plateau nearby. The train has 1923 Pullman cars and runs on the tracks built sometime in the 19th century, which gives a feel of traveling the way American earlier did.

The 4,770 ft high Grand Canyon Skywalk is another tourist attraction built on the edge of the Western side of the Canyon. The skywalk shows the 500 ft and 800 ft vertical drop directly under the skywalk.

Grand Canyon Skywalk
John Wesley Powell, WHO, has a beautiful description for the Canyon. “The glories and the beauties of form, color, and sound unite in the Grand Canyon – forms unrivaled even by the mountains, colors that vie with sunsets, and sounds that span the diapason from tempest to tinkling raindrop, from cataract to bubbling fountain.”

Sounds fascinating? Go there to experience the feeling yourself!

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