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21 April 2024
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On our drive across America, we travelled through Arizona. A beautiful state that at the time I probably didn't appreciate as much as I would now if I were to do this trip again.

Arizona.

We stopped at a few places as we crossed Arizona & these are the places that I can remember stopping at, if any other places come back to me I will add them to this page.

About Arizona.

Arizona is a state in the Southwestern United States. It is the 6th-largest state & the 14th-most-populous of the 50 states. Its capital & largest city is Phoenix. Arizona is part of the Four Corners region with Utah to the north, Colorado to the northeast, & New Mexico to the east. Its other neighbouring states are Nevada to the northwest, California to the west & the Mexican states of Sonora & Baja California to the south & southwest.

Arizona is the 48th state & last of the contiguous states to be admitted to the Union, achieving statehood on February 14, 1912. Historically part of the territory of Alta California in New Spain, it became part of independent Mexico in 1821. After being defeated in the Mexican–American War, Mexico ceded much of this territory to the United States in 1848.

Meteor Crater.

This was a place my dad wanted to visit & the only thing I remember about it was how bored me & my sister were with the big hole in the ground. How things change as we get older, I would be fascinated to go back to visit it now.

About the Meteor Crater.

Meteor craterThe Meteor Crater or Barringer Crater is a meteorite impact crater about 37 miles east of Flagstaff & 18 miles west of Winslow in the desert of northern Arizona. The site had several earlier names, & fragments of the meteorite are officially called the Canyon Diablo Meteorite.

The Meteor Crater lies at an elevation of 5,640 feet above sea level. It is about 3,900 feet in diameter, some 560 feet deep, & is surrounded by a rim that rises 148 feet above the surrounding plains. The centre of the crater is filled with 690–790 feet of rubble lying above the crater bedrock.

The Meteor Crater is a popular tourist destination with roughly 270,000 visitors per year. The crater is owned by a family company, the Barringer Crater Company. The Meteor Crater is an important educational and research site & it was used to train Apollo astronauts & continues to be an active training site for astronauts. The Meteor Crater Visitor Center sits on the north rim of the crater. It features interactive exhibits & displays about meteorites, asteroids, space, the Solar System, & comets including the American Astronaut Wall of Fame, a 1,406 lb meteorite found in the area, & meteorite specimens from the Meteor Crater that can be touched. Formerly known as the Museum of Astrogeology, the Visitor Center includes a Discovery Center & Space Museum, a movie theatre, a gift shop, & observation areas with views inside the rim of the crater.

The Grand Canyon.

The Grand CanyonI remember going to the Grand Canyon on this trip because we flew over the canyon in a helicopter on a 40-minute tour. We stayed in a hotel near the South Rim which I think was the Yavapai Lodge. I remember taking a short walk around the rim & a very short way down into the Canyon. For a long time, I had a very blurred & out of focus photo of my dad, mum & sister walking down a path in the Grand Canyon but I can no longer find it. I also remember thinking how cool it would be to ride a horse in the Grand Canyon but when we asked about it there was a two-year waiting list so we couldn't go.

Whilst there we were also told the reason that the horses are used at the base of the Canyon but for the tourist treks down into the Canyon they use Donkeys or Mules to carry tourists. The reason we were given was that horses will do what they are told to do, if you tried to get the horse to jump over the side it may well jump. Donkeys & Mules however are very stubborn & have greater respect for their own mortality & will not go over the edge. Hence the reason tourists ride Donkeys or Mules down into the Canyon & Horses are used at the base of the Canyon.

I do remember flying the Grand Canyon in a helicopter on this trip though. You can read about the Grand Canyon flight on my bucket list page.

About the Grand Canyon.

The Grand Canyon is a steep-sided canyon carved by the Colorado River in Arizona. It is 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide & in places around a mile deep. 

The canyon & adjacent rim are contained within Grand Canyon National Park, the Kaibab National Forest, Grand Canyon–Parashant National Monument, the Hualapai Indian Reservation, the Havasupai Indian Reservation & the Navajo Nation.

Nearly two billion years of Earth's geological history have been exposed as the Colorado River & its tributaries cut their channels through the layers of rock while the Colorado Plateau was uplifted. For thousands of years, the area has been continuously inhabited by Native Americans, who built settlements within the canyon and its many caves.