The Grand Canyon really was grand!
Erosion over hundreds of millions of years left a gorge of dazzling layers of multi colored rock formations, and is considered one of the 'Seven Natural Wonders Of The World'. I posted many pictures but it is impossible to portray the feeling of awe one gets when starting a mile down into this canyon.
This 1.2 million acre park contains 277 miles of the Colorado River up to 18 miles wide in places. 5 million people visit the Grand Canyon each year but only about 1 in 10 make it to the north rim. Only 10 miles across at the visitor centers, it is a 4 hour drive to get around. The north rim is 1,000 feet higher in elevation and it was quite cold the day we were there. Hopefully a future trip west will bring us to the south rim and even more spectacular views.
Lightning, like at Bryce Canyon, is the biggest threat to visitors. Bear, Bison, Mountain Lions, etc. do not have as big of a risk factor as lightning. A person standing on the rim of a deep canyon can act as a lightning rod, trees along the rim show signs of strikes and standing under a tree can be fatal as well. The day before we arrived a hiker was killed by a strike on the south rim. Late afternoon brought a squall during our visit and as soon as we could see lightning approaching it was off the rim and into our car for us.
Once again we need to thank Theodore Roosevelt for his conservation efforts and strong interest in preserving land for public use. What a treasure we have! People travel from around the world to visit our National Parks, we hear every imaginable language and accent on a daily basis. I wish I would have taken my children to see some of these parks when they were young, maybe I can make up for that by taking the grandchildren....