Grand Canyon

By: Emily Breck

Map of Grand Canyon

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Grand Canyon is a national park located in Arizona. It is the 15th oldest national park. Grand Canyon National Park was named as an official national park in 1919, but the landmark had been well known to Americans for over thirty years prior. The creation of the park was an early success of the conservation movement. Its national park status may have helped prevent proposals to dam the Colorado River within its boundaries. Many of the early buildings of Grand Canyon Village survive today and are included on the National Register of Historic Landmarks.


Elevation and season of the year determine average temperatures at the the Grand Canyon. The higher the elevation, the cooler the temperature. During summer, the temperature is somewhere around 50-80 degrees Fahrenheit. Thunderstorms occur frequently around this season. Winter conditions can be very extreme. Be prepared for snow, icy trails, and possible road closures. During spring and fall, the weather is unpredictable. They mostly have mild temperatures with warm days, and cooler at night.

Geological Point of Interest

South Rim: Grand Canyon Village

is the center of activity and the transportation hub for the South Rim of the park. The village is the only place where the railroad reaches the rim of the canyon. There are three areas of interest: 1)The Visitor Center and Mather Point, 2) Market Plaza - the business center where the general store, the bank and the US Post Office are located, 3) The Historic District, where the railroad depot and original hotels and pioneer village started. The Grand Canyon is the world's most spectacular example of erosion and most remarkable assemblage of exposed rocks in geological sequence and intact.


Mule, deer, coyotes, and elk are commonly seen in the Grand Canyon. Other wildlife includes ravens, lizards, bats, foxes, mountain lions, and rock squirrels. These animals may have infectious diseases, so be careful not to touch them. Rock squirrels tend to bite visitors if you put your fingers near their mouth. Approaching or feeding the wildlife is prohibited. When you approach to closely to wildlife, you may cause them stress and could interfere with behaviors necessary for their survival.

Plants and Trees

There are more than 1,500 known species of plants in the Grand Canyon. The Banana Yucca is the most common and useful plant. It can be used for a source of fiber, and is used in the manufacture for soap. There are 3 other common plants in the canyon. The first one is called the Sego Lily. This can be purple, lilac, or yellow. The second one is an American Plumb tree is also known as the wild plum. This is a big shrub or a little tree. The color is red and can get up to 15 feet high. The third one is a Wooly Daisy. These are found at the edge of the Grand Canyon and are no more than 1 1/2 inches tall. 4 Species of trees have adapted there as well. They are the Ponderosa Pine, Pinyon Pine, Gambel Oak, and the Utah Juniper. The Grand Canyon is also home to many shrubs. Some that are there include the Cliff rose, Fern bush, and Mountain Mahogany.


The canyon is threatened by air pollution and poor air quality. It effects the ability of visitors to see the incredible landscape. This can also be harmful to other peoples health. This pollution and ozone are a result of burning fossil fuels. Other problems are having an elevated ozone layer, and uranium leaching into the park.

Outdoor Activities

Activities include a helicopter and jeep tour, hiking, drive-thru wildlife park, and going to museums.

Works Cited

"Grand Canyon." A&E Television Networks, n.d. Web. 04 Dec. 2014.

"Grand Canyon National Park - Arizona." Grand Canyon National Park: Description. N.p.,

n.d. Web. 04 Dec. 2014.

"Grand Canyon." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th Ed.. 2014, Rufus Kay Wyllys, and "Grand Canyon." World Encyclopedia. 2005. "Grand Canyon." HighBeam Research, 01 Jan. 2014. Web. 04 Dec. 2014.

"Interesting Facts about the Grand Canyon." Interesting Facts about the Grand Canyon. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Dec. 2014.

United States. National Park Service. "Animals." National Parks Service. U.S. Department of the Interior, 02 Dec. 2014. Web. 03 Dec. 2014.

United States. National Park Service. "Places To Go." National Parks Service. U.S. Department of the Interior, 03 Dec. 2014. Web. 04 Dec. 2014.