San Diego, CA
Zion National Park - A Picturesque Wonderland
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© Christine Till - CT-Graphics
Utah's oldest and most visited national park, Zion National Park, is located in southwestern Utah. It presents a diverse collection of nature's wonders that include such features as the towering and magnificent 2,200-foot Great White Throne, the park's most famous landmark; the Court of the Patriarchs; the Sentinel; the Watchman; Checkerboard Mesa; Kolob Arch, at 310 feet the world's largest known natural span; and the Narrows of the Virgin River, where a person can walk upstream to places so narrow that both sides of the canyon walls can almost be touched with one's outstretched hands.
The Zion Canyon area has witnessed many changes in landscape and climate. At times it was covered by the sea; at other times broad rivers traversed its surface; at still other times it was swept by desert winds. Many of the rocks were laid down by water as gravel, sand, mud, and limy ooze. These were consolidated into conglomerates, sandstones, shales, and limestones by the weight of layers above them and by the lime, silica, and iron that cemented the grains.
Although human use of the Zion National Park landscape dates back to at least 6,000 B.C. the magnificence of the area was only known by a privileged few Native American Indians and early Mormon pioneer settlers prior to the completion of a Federal Land Survey in 1908. Today Zion's beauty has gained worldwide recognition and Zion National Park sees more than 1,000,000 visitors annually.
July 4th, 2012
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