Grand Canyon Geographic Statistics
The park is dominated by the spectacular Grand Canyon; a twisting, 1 mile/ 1.6km deep and 277 mile/ 433km long gorge, formed during some six million years of geological activity and erosion by the Colorado River on the upraised earth's crust.
The river divides the park into the North Rim and South Rim which overlook the 10 mile/ 16km wide canyon. The buttes, spires, mesas and temples in the canyon are in fact mountains looked down upon from the rims.
On-going erosion by the seasonal and permanent rivers produces impressive waterfalls and rapids of washed-down boulders along the length of the canyon and its tributaries. There are over 100 named rapids.
Exposed horizontal geological strata in the canyon span some 2,000 million years of geological history, providing evidence of the four major geological eras; late Precambrian, Palaeozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic. (Hunt, 1969; Babcock et al., 1974; Newman, 1977)