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The Grand Canyon Trek

An Exploration of the Grand Canyon - April 27, 2002 - May 4, 2002

he Grand Canyon is known for its overwhelming size and its intricate and colorful landscape. It is geologically significant because of the thick sequence of ancient rocks that are beautifully preserved and exposed in the walls of the Canyon. These rocks record much of the early geologic history of North America. At 150 miles long and 3500 ft deep, the Grand Canyon is one of the most spectacular examples of erosion in the world.

Grand Canyon was largely unknown until Major John Wesley Powell and his intrepid group of nine men, in wooden boats, made their epic journey through the Canyon in 1869.

In the late 19th century interest in the area grew due to the probability of mineral resources. By the begining of the 20th century, the Grand Canyon was a well known tourist destination.

In 1901,a railroad was extended from Williams, Arizona to the south rim, where the development of formal tourist facilities increased to those that we see today.

First afforded Federal protection in 1893 as a Forest Reserve and later as a National Monument, the Grand Canyon did not receive park status until 1919.

Today Grand Canyon receives about 5 million visitors a year. Only a small percentage of those visitors venture down rugged trails to the canyon bottom. It's a different perspective of the magnificence of the Canyon from within the confines of the layered rock walls.

What is so mind boggling is that the span one's hand across these layers can represent millions of years of geologic time.

Bob and Kolleen - The Trailpair