A Grand Canyon Train South Rim Tour Will Leave You Speechless
Industry: Travel & Leisure
Taking a tour the the Grand Canyon South Rim on a Grand Canyon Train will leave you speechless. Breathtaking views, activities for all ages, and an adventure for everyone!
Las Vegas, NV (PRUnderground) November 7th, 2019
The History of the Canyon
The Grand Canyon is a mysterious place, one where rock formations create a surreal experience. The first people to settle his area were the Paleo Indians about 11,000 years ago. Some of the figurines discovered by scientists have reported through radiocarbon dating to be about 4,000 years old.
No other indications of human habitation have been noted until the period of the Anasazi people who lived in the canyon from around 500 to 1500 AD. During the time, the Anasazi lived peacefully in the area with the Cohonino people who hunted sheep, deer, and rabbits, and weaved baskets. As the civilization advanced, the Anasazi built and settled into towns known as pueblos.
The inhabitants built irrigational canals to support farming activities. Both the Anasazi and Cohonino lived in harmony together until a drought in the 13th century forced them to move elsewhere. The Anasazi moved east and became the ancestral people of the Hopi tribe. This type of history makes it so that people cannot help but be intrigued with the discoveries found in the canyon and Grand Canyon National Park today.
Major Trees in the Canyon
Not only have ancient figurines been discovered, the park is home to ancient fossils as well. Along with the fossils, four species of trees make the rims of the Grand Canyon home. These trees include the ponderosa pine, the Gambel oak, the Utah juniper, and the pinyon pine. Below 7,000 feet, the Utah juniper and pinyon pine make up most of the pygmy (small tree) forest of the South Rim.
The pinyon, which features short needles, is known for its edible seeds. Ponderosa pines, which proliferate on the canyon’s North Rim, can grow to amazing heights. One of the common Grand Canyon plants is the banana yucca. Traditionally, Native Americans used the plant in the making of soap. The plant’s fibers were used for making sandals and ropes. The yucca produces edible fruits, which look like small bananas.
The Mountain Mahogany
If you are a botanist, you can find a number of shrubs to study on a Grand Canyon South Rim tour. Some of the shrubs include the fernbush and cliffrose, both which are members of the rose family, and the mountain mahogany. The mountain mahogany is unique, as its white bloom twists like a corkscrew after a rain.
The bright red claret cup species of hedgehog cactus shows off red blooms in the lower elevations of the canyon during April. It waits to bloom until May or June at the edge of the canyon rim, or at higher elevations. If you take a Grand Canyon South Rim tour through a travel provider like Grand Canyon Train Tours, be prepared to be amazed, even speechless when you see this scenery up-close.
Not only will the canyon’s natural history give you something to contemplate, but the scenery is stupendous. The rock formations cast various colors, depending on the time of the day and the season. While a bright sun paints rock faces red and gold, the setting sun shows off purplish pink, blue, and green paints just before moonrise. It defies description when you view the canyon at sunset. You will be glad you had the experience.
An Amazing Example of Erosion
The canyon is the world’s most amazing example of the erosion process. The large abyss spans 277 river miles from the canyon’s wash cliffs to Lees Ferry. The Colorado River is shielded on each end by the Glen Canyon Dam at Lake Powell (upstream) and the Hoover Dam on Lake Mead (the lower section).
Before this type of impoundment, the river transported a voluminous load of sediment, which added much to the continued erosion. Compared to the rocks that carve the canyon, the canyon itself is relatively young, emerging in form in the last six million years.
The result of erosion by water, the canyon’s present depth was created by the Colorado River. Also, the runoff of snowmelt, rain, and rim streams have assisted in shaping and expanding the canyon. The Colorado, itself, lies about 5,000 feet vertically (around a mile) below the canyon’s South Rim. From its beginning in the Colorado Rockies, the Colorado River flows over 1,400 miles to the Gulf of California.
A Natural Pyramid Look
Because of the semi-dry climate in the canyon, erosion proceeds in various ways. In turn, the canyon’s rock formations feature a natural pyramid look. While shale rock erodes into slopes, limestone and sandstone create the canyon’s cliffs. The dark igneous façade in the Inner Gorge, or the southern area of the canyon, resists erosion more than the sedimentary rocks at higher elevations.
Vertical fractures are often seen in canyon walls- cracks that form high pillars along canyon rims. Where the flat-lying sedimentary rocks accumulate, you will see flat-surfaced buttes and mesas. The stunning colors that leave visitors breathless are the result of the presence of minerals and iron- substances that color the canyon walls.
An Unexplained Mystery
Measured thicknesses in the rock average about six thousand feet. Each tier represents a certain time when a specific environment of deposition occurred. Many of the rock layers, however, are divided by gaps- missing rock layers or unconformities that cannot be explained- thus, the mystery surrounding this natural wonder of the world.
The youngest layers of canyon rock make up Kaibab limestone. The top layer was deposited in warm waters during the Paleozoic period (around 65 million years ago). Below the rim, the rock layers are progressively older. Therefore, the oldest rocks of the canyon are found within the walls of the Inner Gorge- metamorphic rock formations and igneous rock called the Vishnu Group.
These rocks vary greatly from the sedimentary rock layers that lie above them. The schists and gneisses of the Vishnu Group, which are about two billion years old, form the foundation of the continent of North America and the USA.
If you have not seen the Grand Canyon before, be sure to schedule a Grand Canyon South Rim tour. Doing so will give you a new appreciation for nature. Contact Grand Canyon Train about day trip tour details from Las Vegas now.
About Grand Canyon Train
Grand Canyon Train Tours provides tours to the Grand Canyon South Rim on the historic Grand Canyon Railway from Las Vegas every day. You will travel to Williams, Arizona via luxury bus and enjoy entertainment and luxury accommodations along the way to the South Rim Train Depot. Prior to boarding the train you will see a reenactment of an old west gunfight with a fabulous ending that will have you ready to experience the train for yourself.
The Grand Canyon Train takes you on a 2 hour journey full of picturesque views into the famous Grand Canyon National Park. On your train adventure, the crew will keep you interested and laughing the whole way to the canyon as they point out sights to see and share historical facts, stories, and places with you. Don’t miss the wonderful guitar- playing and singing cowboys on board too! The Grand Canyon Train is an adventure that you won’t want to miss if you are visiting Las Vegas or the Grand Canyon.