Bryce Canyon: Highlight of Utah's National Park

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  • Topic: Colorado Plateau, Bryce Canyon National Park, Zion National Park
  • Pages : 3 (951 words )
  • Download(s) : 93
  • Published : March 9, 2011
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Bryce Canyon National Park is a national park located in southwestern Utah in the United States. The major feature of the park is Bryce Canyon which, is not a canyon but a giant natural amphitheater created by erosion along the eastern side of the Paunsaugunt Plateau. Bryce is distinctive due to geological structures called hoodoos, formed by wind, water, and ice erosion of the river and lake bed sedimentary rocks. The red, orange, and white colors of the rocks provide spectacular views for park visitors. Bryce sits at a much higher elevation than nearby Zion National Park. The rim at Bryce varies from 8,000 to 9,000 feet. The Bryce area was settled by Mormon pioneers in the 1850s and was named after Ebenezer Bryce, who homesteaded in the area in 1874. The area around Bryce Canyon became a U.S. National Monument in 1923 and was designated as a national park in 1928. The park covers 56 square miles, and receives relatively few visitors compared to Zion National Park and the Grand Canyon, largely due to its remote location. The town of Kanab, Utah, is situated at a central point between these three parks. Bryce Canyon National Park is located in southern Utah about 50 miles northeast of—and 1,000 feet higher than—Zion National Park. The weather in Bryce Canyon is therefore cooler, and the park receives more precipitation, a total of 15 to 18 inches per year. Yearly temperatures vary from an average minimum of 9 °F (−13 °C) in January to an average maximum of 83 °F (28 °C) in July. The national park lies within the Colorado Plateau geographic province of North America and straddles the southeastern edge of the Paunsagunt Plateau west of the Paunsagunt Fault Park visitors arrive from the plateau part of the park and look over the plateau's edge toward a valley containing the fault and the Paria River. The edge of the Kaiparowits Plateau is on the opposite side of the valley. Bryce Canyon was not formed from erosion initiated from a central stream, meaning it...
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