Friday, December 22, 2017

The Grand Canyon: Just One Of The Truly Great National Wonders

There are a variety of national wonders found in the United States, but even among the most extraordinary and fascinating of them all, it is hard to beat what The Grand Canyon in Arizona brings to the table! A genuinely stunning and distinct wonder created from millions of years of geology, geography, and environmental factors, many individuals are impressed at just how many fascinating and awe-inspiring things there are to experience at the Grand Canyon National Park.

Grand Canyon Introduction

Located in Grand Canyon National Park, the Grand Canyon is a wide assortment of canyons etched out of the layered bands of reddish desert rock by the dynamic Colorado River. The canyons in north central Arizona are famous for the layered rocks that reveal millions of years of geology while producing extraordinary natural beauty. There are numerous popular tours, campsites, and viewpoints that create perfect pictures and even better memories.

Grand Canyon History 

Currently the Grand Canyon receives over 5 million travelers a year but this wasn't always the case. The canyon was carved out from river erosion over millions of years, and while most people are familiar with this they are surprised to discover that there are many amazing archaeological discoveries that have been made all throughout the canyon and the valleys.

Artifacts that are an astounding 12,000 years old have been identified that are from the Paleo-Indian time period and there has been active tribes or civilizations living in the region ever since. Considered as a modern-day treasure, the Grand Canyon area was first given federal protection in 1893. Previously declared a forest reserve, in 1919 it would be declared a national park.

Grand Canyon Geology 

There is no denying the amazing geology of the Grand Canyon and it still has scientists researching the area to this day. The mile-high walls are an incredible site to see but they also expose a story. Throughout them, layered bands of reddish rock on the canyon walls present incredible natural history of the local area. Geologists love the canyon given that there are about forty sedimentary layers of rock visible on its walls. This is among the many extraordinary sites a visitor can witness on one of the great day tours offered at the canyon. Geological phenomena's such as vulcanism and stream erosion are two of the primary reasons for the canyons formation.

Popular Points Of Interest 

The Grand Canyon measures up to its name, and while located in north central and northwest Arizona, there are many different specific areas within the park and the canyon itself that are worth a visit. Regardless of whether you are there for photos, education, camping out, or a bit of everything, spend some time to really explore all the points of interest in this area. You will be surprised with how different one part of the park can be from another.

If you are searching for the best viewpoints and some panoramic photos be sure to visit:
- Mather Point
- Mary Colter's Lookout Studio (particularly from the watchtower)
- Lipan Point (especially great for sunrise/sunset photos)
- Yavapai Observation Station
- Grand Canyon Skywalk

Also make sure to do your homework to give yourself the Grand Canyon experience you really wish to see! Some areas are only easily accessible from the south entrances to the park while others are best seen from the north.

Grand Canyon Day Tour 

Most of the best tours are rim specific. Given that the park is so large there are tours for the North Rim, South Rim, and East and West. Your options will depend on what specific part of the park you are in. For instance, there are day tours by horse, raft, and even helicopter. If you are thinking about a tour, check our extensive catalog where you will have plenty of options.

So what are you waiting for? Whether going by yourself, with a small group, or planning the perfect family trip, the Grand Canyon offers an awe-inspiring experience for everyone so why not start planning your trip today? If you have questions or you are still not sure how to approach your visit, we can help you. Our experienced staff is ready to make some awesome suggestions so give us a call today!

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Friday, December 1, 2017

Learn About Oak Creek Canyon

If you are wanting to hike, swim, or fish; visit Oak Creek Canyon! People going to Arizona can be overwhelmed by all of the activities and tourist attractions readily available to them within the state. A common question asked is, what other destinations should I check out besides The Grand Canyon? Among the most popular choices for adventurers is the stunning Oak Creek Canyon. Oak Creek Canyon is commonly referred to by the locals as the small cousin of the Grand Canyon. While it does not match up in size, it does feature incredibly unique scenic charm. This is a fabulous place to visit heading to or from the Grand Canyon.

Beauty of Oak Creek Canyon

This geographical creation is a steep canyon with a fabulous river gorge. It is located in Northern Arizona between Sedona and Flagstaff. The Canyon is often dismissed as just one more hiking location in Arizona but nothing could be further from the truth! If your trip will not permit a full day at Oak Creek Canyon, don't worry. Tourplicity's Grand Canyon Day Tour drives through this work of art on the way to the Grand Canyon!

Oak Creek Canyon Facts

Oak Creek Canyon is close to 13 miles long. It has a width that ranges from 0.8 miles to 2.5 miles wide. The canyon hits depths ranging from just 800 feet to a spectacular 2,000 feet. Due to faulting during the canyon's formation, Oak Creek Canyon's West Rim is about 700 feet higher than its East Rim. The canyon's elevation to the western side is around 7,200 feet whereas the east side's elevation is close to 6,500 feet. This diverse area contains water features, red rock formations, and pine trees.

Geological evidence reveals that the formation of Oak Creek Canyon occurred about 10 million years ago. The original canyon was later filled by a number of lava flows and gravel deposits during the Miocene Epoch. Around this time frame, the Oak Creek Fault which was once inactive became active. At this point, the existing day canyon started to form along the fault line because of the erosional action of Oak Creek. Oak Creek carves through the canyon and it is a tributary to the Verde River.

Oak Creek at Oak Creek Canyon

The eroded walls of the Oak Creek Canyon are mainly formed of Paleozoic sedimentary rocks. These sedimentary rocks are formed by the build-up of sediments over time. The exposures of Kaibab Limestone and Toroweap formations are only on the canyon's northern end. The most commonly exposed rock on the southern edge of the canyon are the white and red colored sandstones of the Schnebly Hill Formation. The east rim of the canyon includes some of the youngest rocks. This area's rocks developed from basalt lava flows that are estimated to be 6 million years old.

Recreational Activities

The Oak Creek Canyon is found within the unique Coconino National Forest. Some areas of the canyon are assigned as federal wilderness areas to conserve their natural condition for future generations. There are numerous recreation areas, picnic areas, and campgrounds managed by the United States Forest Service within the canyon. This makes the Oak Creek Canyon an awesome place to visit for people of all ages.

swimming at Oak Creek Canyon

One of the main attractions is the natural water slide, Slide Rock. Located in Slide Rock State Park, the slide ranges from 2.5 feet to 4 feet wide and is 80 feet long! If you count on visiting Slide Rock make sure you visit when the water is warm. It can reach near freezing temperatures in the cooler months. Also, be cautious in the water when crossing on foot because the sandstone is very slippery. The canyon also presents more than 49 miles of fishable waters along the creek. Fishing fanatics can hope to catch catfish, brown trout, rainbow trout as well as smallmouth bass in this area. Aside from swimming and fishing, backpacking the trails leading into the canyon or up to the canyon's rim is a must do activity.

Slide Rock at Oak Creek Canyon

If you intend to check out the canyon on your own, you can access it relatively easily. You will just need to drive south from Flagstaff on US Route 89A. After about 14 miles, you will arrive at the canyon's edge. At this point the canyon plunges close to a thousand feet through a string of switchbacks to the bottom. On the bottom of the canyon, you can investigate an extra thirteen miles alongside the flowing, crystal clear Oak Creek.

If you do not have the time to visit Oak Creek Canyon, take advantage of our Grand Canyon Day Tour. The tour departs from Scottsdale, Tempe, or Phoenix and will drive through Oak Creek Canyon on the way to the Grand Canyon! Call us and speak with a tour specialist to make your reservation today!

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Friday, November 17, 2017

The Grand Canyon and Navajo Nation

The Navajo are one of the awe-inspiring attractions on a Grand Canyon Day Tour. The Navajo Nation is an ancient American area enveloping just over 70,000 square kilometers. It inhabits some parts of Northeastern Arizona, Southeastern Utah and Northwestern New Mexico in the United States of America. It is one of the most remarkable regions retained by a native American people with a population of close to 350,000 people.

The Navajo nation has an extensive history since its establishment in 1868. The Navajo people are thought to be closely related to the Apaches, and both these tribes moved from North of Canada where many of the Athabaskan speakers live. In fact, Athabaskan speakers living in Canada can comprehend the Navajo language despite the geographical division.

The movement of the Navajo people began in 1400 CE, and the people were believed to be hunters and gatherers before coming into contact with the Spanish and Pueblos. Their relationship with these people introduced them to new crop farming techniques that consisted of growing beans, corn and squash. In addition, they learned about livestock farming from the Spanish. Within no time; meat was an essential part of the Navajo diet. The trade relations between the Navajos and the Spanish continued and resulted in the formation of a loose alliance that was intended to fight off the Apache and Comanche bands.

In the year 1800, Governor Chacon led an expedition against the Navajos and moved the Navajo chiefs to call for peace. Several expeditions between the Spanish and Navajos occurred in the coming years and in 1805, the request for peace was reinforced. Peace talks between the Navajos, Spanish, Apaches, and Hopis continued until the arrival of the Americans in 1846.

The first contact among the Navajos and the Americans came in 1846 when an American general occupied the Navajo territory during the American-Mexican War. Because of the intrusion, the Navajo chiefs authorized several treaties with the American generals that acknowledged the transfer of jurisdiction of the territory from the United Mexican States to the United States. This arrangement allowed for the building of trading forts and other facilities in the Navajo territory. The treaty did not go well with all the groups involved, particularly the Mexicans and several raids resulted but after several years, the Americans managed to restore peace in the Navajo area.

The Navajo culture is rich in art and crafts. These people are excellent silversmiths, and this trade was introduced to them by the Mexicans and Spaniards at the time of the 19th century. The major source of silver was from molten American silver dollars. Their art skills were not limited to silver works as their pottery skills were amazing as well. The earliest pieces of pottery have been recorded back to the early 1500's. After The Long Walk in 1860, the trading posts built allowed Navajo artisans to sell their pottery. Ancient Navajo pottery pieces have hardly any decorations and what makes them special is their melted pinon pitch which makes the pieces glossy and waterproof. It is common to find random grey and black markings on the items. These markings are described as fire clouds which are caused by the direct burning of fuel during firing.

The other exceptional crafts created by the Navajo people are wedding baskets. These baskets are a significant part of their ceremonies. Today, people from all over the world seek them for their beautiful style and qualities.

Navajo rug weaving skills are strongly recognized around the world, and this is due to their unique designs. The rugs are a beauty to the eye, and this skill is believed to have originated from a woman called "The Spiderwoman", who made a loom according to the instructions given to her by the Holy Ones. Today, the Navajo art of making rugs has been diversified and the pieces available are genuinely breathtaking.

The last element of Navajo art that was used for ceremonial purposes is the method of sand painting. The paintings represent a wide range of ceremonies and holy songs. This skill has also been adopted by modern artists today.

A Grand Canyon Day Tour is the perfect way to experience the region and The Navajo Nation. Enjoy a tour from Tourplicity and visit a Navajo trading post where you can buy arts and crafts from these incredible people. Give us a call today to make your tour reservation!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Historical Information About The Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon is a "five-thousand-foot-deep gorge carved by the Colorado River in northwestern Arizona". It reaches 277 miles long, 18 miles wide and more than a mile deep. The Grand Canyon is a consequence of continual erosion due to the Colorado River throughout millions of years.

Where is the Grand Canyon located?

The Grand Canyon lies in the northwest corner of Arizona and it borders Utah and Nevada. It is accessible from neighboring areas like Phoenix, Flagstaff, Sedona, and Las Vegas. The vast majority of the Grand Canyon is located within Grand Canyon National Park and is overseen by the National Park Service (NPS), the Hualapai Tribal Nation and the Havasupai Tribe.

Additionally, the Colorado River passes through the enormous canyon. It touches seven states, but the Grand Canyon National Park is inside Arizona's state borders. Arizona is predominantly thought of as the Grand Canyon State. Apart from the Grand Canyon, the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area is found in Utah and the Lake Mead National Recreation Area contacts the Grand Canyon in Nevada.
The Grand Canyon's climate is primarily semi-arid. Some segments of the upper plateau feature forests. Alternatively, the canyon's lower regions are a series of desert basins. According to the NPS, there more than 1,500 plants and 517 combined creatures found in the park. These creatures include several species of mammals, fish, reptiles and more.

The Grand Canyon is divided into two different zones. They are known as the North Rim and the South Rim. The South Rim is open all year and it experiences the bulk of the park's guests. In addition to the canyon, the South Rim has numerous services such as an air terminal and railroads. This area is a good location for transport services and is accessible from surrounding cities. Visitors will usually depart from these areas by utilizing a Grand Canyon Day Tour.

The North Rim lies closer to Nevada and Utah. This area is not nearly as accessible as the South Rim nevertheless it has amazing views and sights. Normally, hiking is the best way to gain access to it via the North and South Kaibab Trails. There are also roads to the North Canyon but the range is over 200 miles and due to factors like weather and conditions, they are not always proven to be safe to travel.

Grand Canyon Skywalk 

The Canyon's National Park is a great tourist location. Within the park is one of the more popular tourist attractions, the Grand Canyon Skywalk. The horseshoe shaped platform is made of glass and the rim of the Grand Canyon is 70 feet behind you. The opposite side of the canyon is 3 miles in front of you. It stands almost 4,000 feet above the floor of the canyon. The structure opened in March 2007 and over 300,000 people visit is every year.

How was the Grand Canyon formed?

Geologists dispute over the particulars of the formation of the Grand Canyon. Many argue the process and time it took to forge this incredible site. The overall consensus was updated at a 2010 conference. Its believed that the Colorado River carved the Grand Canyon over 6 million years ago.

Modern advancements in dating methods suggest a new theory and time of when the rocks where revealed by erosion. The theory conflicts with the conventional idea that the canyon was uniformly created and that there where actually two separate canyons initially. They are known as the East and West Canyons. The West Canyon could be as old as 70 million years according to recent studies.

The walls of the Grand Canyon are composed of almost fifty different rock layers. Since they run the length of the canyon, this provides scientists with the ability to study geologic progression.
Over century's time, indigenous people made the canyon their home and created settlements all throughout it. Many clues into their civilization have been discovered inside the canyon and it's caves. Furthermore, the Pueblo people considered the Grand Canyon a religious site and made pilgrimages to it.

An explorer from Spain, García López de Cárdenas, was the 1st European recorded to have seen the Grand Canyon. Garcia was a member of the 1540 expedition of Francisco Vásquez de Coronado. He located the canyon when searching for a river he learned about from the Hopi people.

President Theodore Roosevelt, promoted the conservation of the Grand Canyon. When at the canyon, he spent time hunting and studying the terrain. Based off of his adventure their, he mentioned, "In the Grand Canyon, Arizona has a natural wonder which is in kind absolutely unparalleled throughout the rest of the world. I want to ask you to keep this great wonder of nature as it now is. I hope you will not have a building of any kind, not a summer cottage, a hotel or anything else, to mar the wonderful grandeur, the sublimity, the great loneliness and beauty of the canyon. Leave it as it is. You can not improve on it. The ages have been at work on it, and man can only mar it". President Roosevelt created the Grand Canyon Game Preserve in 1906 and the Grand Canyon National Monument in 1908. Nearly 15 years later the Grand Canyon eventually became the fifteenth national park. In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson authorized The Grand Canyon National Park Act and the NPS assumed administration duties of the park.

The Grand Canyon is an amazing sight to see. If you are interested in visiting the canyon make sure to arrange for your trip. Tourplicity offers tourists with a complete catalog of tour options. Call us to schedule your Grand Canyon Day Tour today!

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Monday, October 9, 2017

Planning To Visit The Grand Canyon?

Grand Canyon Day Tour from Phoenix

Maximizing a Grand Canyon Day Tour or reserving 2 to 3 days at the canyon are the ideal ways to experience it. The canyon is one of the most impressive natural wonders on the planet. It attracts more than 4 million annual visitors and encompasses 1,904 square miles. Therefore, it is no surprise why it is one of the country's most treasured natural wonders! This spectacular landmark is a place that every person should make a point to experience. It would be virtually impossible to see all that it offers nonetheless; we can make some helpful recommendations so that your future trip will be an awesome experience!


Decide on which side of The Grand Canyon you want to see. The South Rim will access the most park services available but remember that this section will have a large amount of vacationers. Alternatively, the North Rim offers a secluded environment at higher elevations. If you are interested in the North Rim, plan your trip between the middle of May to mid October. It will only be accessible at those times since snowfall starts earlier in the season compared to the South Rim.

Grand Canyon South Rim


Figure out when and the length of time you will be visiting the Grand Canyon so that you can take advantage of its incredible sights. Generally, people devote a day to three days touring. The most popular times to visit the Grand Canyon are spring, summer, and fall. The South Rim is open year round and is generally busiest in the summer. If you are interested in embarking on an activity such as a Grand Canyon Day Tour, hiking trips, helicopter tours, or white water rafting. These tourist attractions are very popular and you will need to make reservations several months ahead of time. Between scheduled tours don't forget to visit of the local museums and picturesque roads and trails. Many visitors enjoy visiting The Grand CanyonVillage. This village offers great lodging and gives you access to Yavapai Point.


The Grand Canyon is accessible by driving or flying and there are many day tours offered leaving from neighboring areas. Most vacationers depart from Phoenix, AZ, Flagstaff, AZ, or Las Vegas, NV. Riding on a bus or driving yourself to South Rim will allow you to experience the terrain however, flying will offer a breathtaking view. It will take approximately 3 hours and 30 minutes to reach the canyon if you plan on driving from Phoenix and 4 hours and 9 minutes from Las Vegas. The North Rim is typically accessed from the South Rim by car, bus, or flight.


The canyon has several lodging possibilities for its travelers. Everything from outdoor camping, lodges, RV parks, to hotels are available. If you plan on lodging at a campsite there is an average fee of $40 a night. Rooms at a local hotel or The El Tovar Hotel can range between $100 to $400 a night. In either case there are pros and cons to each option. Either way you can't go wrong!

Grand Canyon Lodging

The Grand Canyon should most certainly be on everyone's to do list. Properly planning your Grand Canyon Day Tour or multi-day visit is important if you would like to experience everything it offers. Tourplicity provides visitors with a terrific catalog of tours to enjoy. Have a look at our Phoenix, Flagstaff, and Las Vegas options if you are interested in visiting. Contact us today to set up your Grand Canyon experience!