Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon is in Arizona. It is an enormous valley with steep sides. It is 446 km long, 29 km wide and 1,500 m deep. There are no bridges across the canyon so if you want to go to the other side you mus go all the way round.
The canyon was formed by the action of the Colorado River which flows along the bottom of the canyon. It has taken the river six million years to form the canyon.
The canyon looks stripy because there are nine different layers of rock. Each layer is a different color - brown, purple and even pink ans they contain fossils of different periods. The rocks at the bottom are about 2 billion years old.
There are six different climate and wildlife zones in the canyon. At the top it is quite cool. In this part there are bobcats and coyotes. In the hotter parts further down there are rattlesnakes. There are also mountain lions and sheep in the canyon. About 5.000.000 people visit the canyon every year. People like travelling down to the bottom on mule but the canyon is so deep that this takes a whole day and you have to sleep overnight at the bottom of the canyon. There is a tourist resort at the very bottom but you must book a permit several months in advance. Tourists can visit the canyon in many other ways, too - on foot, by helicopter or by plane, rafting and by visiting the Skywalk.
The Grand Canyon Skywalk opened in 2007. It is a curved balcony over the Grand Canyon. It projects 21 meters out over the canyon and it is made of glass so you can see all the way to the bottom of the canyon. The Hualapai Indians, who are the owners of the territory, needed to find a way of creating more work for their people so they built this attraction to attract more visitors to the area. In the future they plan to build an Indian village and a luxury resort. But not all the Hualapai Indians are happy - some think that it is not right to commercialize their sacred home.
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