It Is More Than Two Hundred Miles Long, From Five To Twelve Miles
Wide, And From Five Thousand To Six Thousand Feet Deep.
There are in the
world valleys which are longer and a few which are deeper.
valleys flanked by summits loftier than the palisades of the Kaibab. Still
the Grand Canyon is the sublimest thing on earth. It is so not alone by
virtue of its magnitudes, but by virtue of the whole its tout ensemble."
What, then, is this Grand Canyon, for which its friends dare to make so
large and bold a claim?
It is a portion - a very small portion - of the waterway of the Colorado
River, and it is so named to differentiate it from the other canyons of the
same river. The canyon system of the Colorado River is as vast in its
extent as is the Grand Canyon in its quality of sublimity. For it consists
of such a maze of canyons - the main canyons through which the river itself
runs; the canyons through which its tributaries run; the numberless canyons
tributary to the tributary canyons; the canyons within canyons, that, upon
the word of no less an authority than Major Powell, I assert that if these
canyons were placed end for end in a straight line they would reach over
twenty thousand miles! Is it possible for the human mind to conceive a
canyon system so vast that, if it were so placed, it would nearly belt the
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