Yavapai Museum of Geology

View of the canyon from Yavapai Geology Museum
View of the canyon from Yavapai Geology Museum.
NPS Photo
Located at Yavapai Point overlook, in between Grand Canyon Visitor Center and Grand Canyon Village. The facility features:
  • Bookstore and Museum Shop
  • Exhibits Geology

    Open daily: 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
    Daily geology programs are given here.
 
Interior of Yavapai Museum of Geology. Bookstore (far left) and exhibits. (July 5, 2011)
Interior of Yavapai Museum of Geology. Bookstore (far left) and exhibits. (July 5, 2011)
NPS Photo by Michael Quinn
 
View north from inside Yavapai Museum of Geology, looking out across Grand Canyon. (March 27, 2013)
View north from inside Yavapai Museum of Geology, looking out across Grand Canyon. (March 27, 2013)
NPS photo by William T. Joye
 
Yavapai Observation Station
Yavapai Observation Station
NPS Photo
On May 24, 2007, the National Park Service re-dedicated the historic Yavapai Observation Station — originally called the Yavapai Point Trailside Museum — on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. New geology exhibits, consistent with the vision of the building’s designers to “make the out-of-doors intelligible,” were also unveiled.
 
Immersion into Geology
Immersion into Geology
NPS Photo

The current museum exhibits explain the deposition of the rock layers, the uplift of the Colorado Plateau, and the carving of the Grand Canyon. Displays include beautifully crafted artwork, three-dimensional models, powerful photographs, and interpretive panels which allow park visitors to see and understand the complicated geologic story of the area.

 
Large Topographic Relief Model
Large Topographic Relief Model
Photo/Konrad Szelock, GCA

A large topographic relief model in the front room of the Yavapai Observation Station mimics the canyon view in remarkable detail. The map is a dimensional, tactile model that has true color and labeling directly applied. Visitors can quickly gain an eye-opening vantage to the three-dimensional nature and scale of the Grand Canyon.

 
Yavapai Point Trailside Museum in 1929.
Yavapai Point Trailside Museum (1929)
NPS Photo by George Grant

The original structure, which was first dedicated in July 1928, was designed by architect Herbert C. Maier. The building was erected on a site selected by a team of geologists for the express purpose of observing and understanding Grand Canyon geology. Maier designed the Yavapai Point Trailside Museum to blend into its setting, and used indigenous Kaibab limestone and ponderosa pine in its construction.

 
West Facing Exposure of Yavapai Museum in 1929.
West Facing Exposure of Yavapai Museum (June 17, 1929)
NPS Photo by George Gant

West Facing Exposure of Yavapai Museum. Shows talus and cliff below. Canyon beyond. June 17,1929.

 
NATURALIST EDWIN MCKEEE SHOWS THE CANYON TO VISITORS FROM THE PARAPET OF YAVAPAI OBSERVATION STATION.
Naturalist Edwin McKee shows the Canyon to visitors from the parapet of Yavapai Observation Station
NPS Photo
Naturalist Edwin McKee shows the Canyon to visitors from the parapet of Yavapai Observation Station. Circa 1930.
 
Ralph Reburn shows visitors the geological column
Ralph Reburn Shows Visitors the Geological Column
NPS Photo
Ranger naturalist Ralph Reburn shows Yavapai Museum visitors the geological column. September 1932.
 
Park staff planting memorial tree for Stephen Mather. 1931.
Park Staff Planting Memorial Tree for Stephen Mather in 1931
NPS Photo
1931 photo of park staff planting Steven Mather memorial tree at Yavapai Observation Station. L to R: 1.) Woman not identified, 2.) Mrs. Edwin McKee, 3.) James Brooks, Chief Ranger, 4.) Ranger not identified, 5.) Edwin McKee, Park Naturalist, holding shovel, 6.) Donald McHenry, Jr. Naturalist, 7.) Polly Mead-Patraw, Naturalist, 8.) Carl Lehnert, Ranger, 9.) Art Brown, Ranger, 10.) Clark Carrol, Engineer, standing, 11.) Preston Patraw, Assistant Superintendent.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Last updated: April 2, 2017

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Mailing Address:

PO Box 129
Grand Canyon, AZ 86023

Phone:

(928) 638-7888

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