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Rafters in the Grand Canyon
The vast majority of geologists and scientists today believe that the Grand Canyon was carved by the Colorado River over a period of about 4 to 6 million years, in the U.S. state of Arizona. It is largely contained within the Grand Canyon National Park — one of the first national parks in the United States. President Theodore Roosevelt was a major proponent of the Grand Canyon area, visiting on numerous occasions to hunt

mountain lions and enjoy the scenery.
The reason that the Grand Canyon is so deep compared to other river-carved canyons is because of geologic uplifting. The river cuts through a series of high plateaus (the top of the canyon is at an elevation of 7000 feet) called the Colorado Plateau that was pushed up above the surrounding land due to plate techtonics (which also produced many of the western mountains). The upward motion of the land increased the rate of erosion in much the same way that pushing a block of wood into a band saw will cause the saw to cut faster .

The canyon appears on many versions of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World list, although none of these lists is by any means authoritative.

Temperatures on the North Rim are generally lower than the South Rim because of the greater elevation (8000 feet (2400 meters) above sea level). Heavy snowfall is common during the winter months. Views from the North Rim tend to give a better impression of the expanse of the canyon than those from the South Rim.

Archeological Resources:
The oldest human artifacts found are nearly 12,000 years old and date to the Paleo-Indian period. There has been continuous use and occupation of the park since that time.

The park has recorded over 4,800 archeological resources with an intensive survey of nearly 3% of the park area.


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Rafters in the Grand Canyon