Thursday, November 8, 2007

Grand Canyon

Grand CanyonArizona USA

grand canyonGrand Canyon

The earth on which we live in has unbelievable features; if not fully convinced of the statement go and see the Grand Canyon, any one will agree with a shock and awe that the earth is a real wonder. Looking on the rim one may find the ‘really grand’ canyon as a giant crack on the face of the earth; it may look as if the Mother Earth got cracked in to two, but scientists claim it has been made by the erosive effect of the Colorado River that flows thousands of meters down the ridges.

Some millions and some billions.

As per scientists the canyon is the creation of the Colorado River; its running waters engaged in non-stop erosion activity; that has taken to take away the rocks; and carved out such a canyon. Need a pinch of salt to digest? If so, how many millions of years it would have taken to rob of so much mass of rocks? No definite answer several millions, that is all! What would be the age of the rock that got caved in as the canyon, the answer is “several billions”.

Really grand canyon!

grand canyonGrand Canyon map courtsey:

The Grand Canyon - central part of the Grand Canyon National Park- is in the state of Arizona. This location was first discovered by Coronado a European in 1540. The Grand Canyon National Park is 4927 sq km in area is the largest national park in US. It is located in a plateau at about 8200 feet above sea level. This canyon located between two rims (the North Rim and the South Rim) is 20 to 29 km wide (from one rim to the other), and depth between 3000 to 5000 feet; the canyon is about 500 km long.

And quietly flows the Colorado!

In the bottom river Colorado flows quite like a thin blue thread stretched between the desolate setting and rugged terrain. It would be hard to assume that such an innocent river could make this vast expanse of a canyon and still keep on flowing as if does not know any thing about the origin of the canyon!

Money spinner.

This area though placed in a remote corner of Arizona has turned out to be a virtual money spinner to US, as each year the numbers of tourists who visit the spot keep on increasing and to the visitors to US Grand canyon remains in the top of their wish list. The Grand Canyon National Park has been declared a National Park by the US government in 26th February 1919. The UNESCO has also approved it as World Heritage site.

Some precautions before visit.

grand canyonGrand Canyon

As pleasure seekers from US as well as those around the world come here for enjoyment, tourists who are not accustomed with realities may face problems. June to mid September is the ideal time for visit. About 4 million people visiting this park every year and the South Rim is the favorite location of 90% of them.

Not a city!

  • Grand Canyon is not a city; but a remote location those who come without advance booking in the lodges as well as personal belongings will be in trouble.

  • During seasons traffic will be heavy and be prepared for snarls that can make anybody restless (avoiding peek season is the only way out).

  • Servicing of vehicles would be difficult (keep the vehicle fit check the spare tire), refilling of fuel will be problem, so come with the tank full.

  • Take enough water as well as food items (otherwise will have to beg for a bottle of water!).

  • It is good to take an extra set of car keys as loss of a set should not make you a lost child.
  • Parking of vehicles will also be an issue for those who come late, hence be an early bird (better leave the car at the gate and take free bus facility).

  • There are few rain shelters take an umbrella because the weather; as it is every where is quite un-predictable.

  • South Rim is about 7000 feet above sea level (people with Asthma or claustrophobia better avoid walking through the trails).

Hikers beware!

grand canyonGrand Canyon

Hiking is a thrilling experience but Grand Canyon is no ordinary hill! Only those with good health should try it. Even those with experience in hiking should spend two days one for the descent and spent night in a secure place and start climbing next day. Take enough water with electrolytes to keep body cool as the temperature may rise up to 41 degree Celsius. There may be confrontations with rattle snakes (very common in the locality) just ignore it and mind your business.

Feeding or going near wild animals is not only risky but there is fine for such activities as it is illegal (leave the wild as wild).


the grand canyonGrand Canyon

The efficiency that is found in facilitating maximum convenience to the tourists along with ensuring their safety is a demanding task, but the same is managed here with marked efficiency. Canyon View Information Plaza is open 365 days and provides necessary guidance to tourists. They also provide rest rooms and a good library for visitors. There are more than one vantage point in short walk distance like Mater Point. There is free shuttle service Grand Canyon Village Desert View or take the Hermit road to the rim in 13 km distance where private vehicles are not allowed.

Tour options.

There is no dearth for packaged tour organized by tour operators, programs which are tailor made fit for age groups as well as all pockets. All facilities can and should be previously booked for ensuring availability. There are helicopter ride enabling visitors to see the ultimate details of the canyon the multicolor hues of the rough terrain scattered along with boulders of many shapes. There is one option more thrilling that is rafting through the Colorado River to the canyon; it is dove-tailed with helicopter down an up to save time and energy at the cost of some money.

Hualapai Reservation.

There are Red Indian villages in the southern side of Colorado River; inhabited by Hualapai Tribes (hualapai in native language means ‘people of tall pine’ denoting the lush pine forests where they originally lived). This settlement is about 150 sq km in area and population is 1350 these people live in a world of their own and the tribal chieftains still wield power over the community. Law and order are maintained by Bureau of Indian Affairs. Yavapai and Havasupai (who live nearby) are related tribes. The contact with modern culture and life style has wreaked havoc in their culture, now alcoholism and obesity has become prevalent.

Business of selling dreams!

The business acumen of America is visible everywhere, entrepreneurs here know how to do business and make money, they know that here people are out to seek some pleasure, and tour operators leave no opportunities unexplored in rendering all sorts of services and facilities to the visitors; and as a result money flows here mightier than River Colorado while the tourists satisfaction level rises above South Ridge; That is American dream!

1 comment:

Babitha Marina Justin said...

Thats again a nice one, in fact i have been to one of the grand canyon look-alikes in india called Balpakram in the South Garo Hills in Meghalaya. it was amazing to explore the unfathom beauty of the place. if you are interested, you may visit the place. but it means hiking for 25 kms and real, real adventure!!!!