Age of the Grand Canyon Everyone has heard about the great ages claimed by proponents of evolution, this is particularly true of Grand Canyon. The question is, do radioactive isotope dating methods provide convincing scientific evidence for billion-year old rocks? Two lava-flow formations occur in the Grand Canyon: In a recent study, these formations were both selected for radioactive isotope dating by the rubidium-strontium isochron technique. The deeply buried Cardenas Basalt occurs among the oldest strata of the Grand Canyon. This basalt has been assigned to the Precambrian strata of the Unkar Group, which contains the lowest, and hence the oldest strata of the Grand Canyon.
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Bohlin is open to examining the theories of both young-earth and old-earth scientists to explain what we can observe today. The Grand Canyon provides an excellent venue to consider the theories of both groups on how the geological layers were formed and when this occured. The Age of the Earth and Genesis 1 How old is the earth?
How long has this planet been here?
Grand Canyon. Is a chasm miles long and up to 18 miles wide; They range from ancient marine fossils dating back billion years to fairly recent land mammals that left their remains in canyon caves about 10, years ago. There’s a town down in the canyon.
Idealized and simplified diagram of the Grand Canyon There are a number of lava flows on the plateau that the canyon is cut into yellow in Figure 1, above. These lava flows are Cenozoic in age, and some of them spill into the canyon. The walls of the canyon are mostly cut into horizontal rock layers of Paleozoic age green in Figure 1, above.
There is an angular unconformity at the bottom of the Paleozoic layers. An angular unconformity is the result of tilting and eroding of the lower layers before the upper ones are deposited. These tilted and eroded layers are Precambrian in age blue in Figure 1, above. The geological relationships of the various formations are quite clear.
Grand Canyon Series
The older, Late Proterozoic sedimentary sequence is comprised of the Grand Canyon Supergroup which consists of the Chaur Group, the Nankoweap Formation, the Unkar Group, and the Sixtymile Formation, and is only found in isolated patches along the main Colorado River corridor and some of its major tributaries Figure 2. Beginning about 1, million years ago and lasting about million years during the Late Proterozoic Era , approximately 13, feet of sediments and lava were deposited in coastal and shallow marine environments.
Basin-and-Range style crustal deformation beginning about million years ago lifted and tilted these rocks. Subsequent erosion removed these tilted layers from much of the Grand Canyon region leaving only wedge-shaped remnants preserved in large graben structures Figure 2 , mainly observed in the eastern parts of the canyon. These mudstones, sandstones, and limestones are widely distributed in the canyon, but total a mere 2, and 5, feet thick by comparison with Proterozoic rocks.
They offer a plethora of evidence interpreted as coastal and marine environments, including several significant marine incursions from the west, developed on a passive continental margin setting between about and million years ago.
The Geology of the Grand Canyon: Shown below is a real transect across the entire Grand Canyon (in two parts). This profile is composed of both the surface topography and the inferred geology underfoot.
Every year, millions of people come to enjoy these natural and manmade wonders. And when they visit they take lots of photos—hundreds, maybe even thousands of them! Most will go home with okay snapshots, while others might give up—deciding to buy postcards or a book instead. Want to make the most of your photo opportunities? Here are a few tips to help you best capture these breathtaking destinations: Large-format, Polaroid or video cameras are also fun to try out and can provide different perspectives of the landscapes.
Grand Canyon at least 70 Million Years Old
By Saturday morning, it was riven in two by a vast trench up to ft across, 15ft deep and yards long. Luckily, no buildings were near enough to be affected. Now the floodwater has drained away and the river has returned to its normal level, an almost empty canyon remains, with just a trickle of water at the bottom. In fact, it is estimated that the water carried into the river up to 12, cubic metres of soil, weighing 15, tons, the volume of 25 swimming pools.
Drive to Grand Canyon’s South Rim from Las Vegas. hours, miles ( kms) Some folks drive two hours from Las Vegas to Grand Canyon West, which is operated by the Hualapai Canyon West is famous for the Skywalk, a dramatic glass walkway perched several thousand feet above the Colorado River.
How rapidly can a canyon form? Helens has provided some clues. Helens volcano in Washington State on May 18, , produced a series of geologic surprises. As the pressure was released by the departure of the rockslide, superheated water inside the volcano flashed to steam creating a twenty megaton, northward-directed blast of hot gas and rock fragments. In six minutes the blast leveled 3. The nine-hour eruption which followed was one of the most photographed and studied volcanic events in history.
Part of the rockslide debris catastrophically displaced the water of Spirit Lake, producing waves up to feet high at the north shore of the lake Coffin , Voight et al. As the water returned to its basin, it scoured slopes of trees and soil, and, together with material from the initial eruption, produced a foot-thick deposit on the bottom of the lake Meyer and Carpenter The new level of Spirit Lake has been stabilized since August by the Army Corps of Engineers at an elevation of feet, feet higher than its pre-eruption level.
Figure 1 shows the new shore of Spirit Lake with a cliff up to 20 feet high that was cut by erosion since the lake level was stabilized.
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Recent Fossils Grand Canyon has so much more than pretty scenery. It contains an amazing diversity of rock formations with an abundance of fossils hidden within. The sedimentary rocks exposed throughout the canyon are rich with marine fossils such as crinoids, brachiopods, and sponges with several layers containing terrestrial fossils such as leaf and dragonfly wing impressions, and footprints of scorpions, centipedes, and reptiles. Ancient fossils preserved in the rock layers range from algal mats and microfossils from Precambrian Time 1, million to million years ago to a multitude of body and trace fossils from the Paleozoic Era million years ago.
What about dinosaur fossils? Not at Grand Canyon!
An exciting new study has just been conducted on the Sixtymile Formation of the Grand Canyon that has shown the sandstone analyzed to be not nearly as old as had been assumed in the past, when it was mistakenly believed that this area belonged to the Precambrian Grand Canyon Supergroup.
History[ edit ] poster of the park “Grand Canyon” was officially designated a national park on February 26, ,  though the landmark had been well known to Americans for over thirty years prior. It is beyond comparison—beyond description; absolutely unparalleled through-out the wide world Let this great wonder of nature remain as it now is.
Do nothing to mar its grandeur, sublimity and loveliness. You cannot improve on it. But what you can do is to keep it for your children, your children’s children, and all who come after you, as the one great sight which every American should see. The first bill to establish Grand Canyon National Park was introduced in by then-Senator Benjamin Harrison , which would have established Grand Canyon as the second national park in the United States after Yellowstone.
Harrison unsuccessfully reintroduced his bill in and ; after his election to the presidency, he established the Grand Canyon Forest Reserve in The National Park Service , established in , assumed administration of the park. The creation of the park was an early success of the conservation movement. Its national park status may have helped thwart proposals to dam the Colorado River within its boundaries.
Grand Canyon, immense canyon cut by the Colorado River in the high plateau region of northwestern Arizona , U. The broad, intricately sculptured chasm of the canyon contains between its outer walls a multitude of imposing peaks, buttes, gorges, and ravines. It ranges in width from about yards metres to 18 miles 29 km and extends in a winding course from the mouth of the Paria River, near Lees Ferry and the northern boundary of Arizona with Utah , to Grand Wash Cliffs, near the Nevada state line, a distance of about miles km ; the first portion of the canyon—from Lees Ferry to the confluence with the Little Colorado River—is called Marble Canyon.
The Grand Canyon also includes many tributary side canyons and surrounding plateaus. The greatest depths of the Grand Canyon lie more than a mile some 6, feet [1, metres] below its rim.
The age and evolution of the Grand Canyon have been subjects of great interest and debate since its discovery. We found that cave mammillaries (water table indicator speleothems) from nine sites in the Grand Canyon showed uranium-lead dating evidence for an old western Grand Canyon on the assumption that groundwater table decline rates are equivalent to incision rates.
Clearly visible in the canyon walls are the light-colored granites, such as the Zoroaster Granite, which are stark against the darker, folded strata of the Vishnu Schist and the other metamorphic rock units of the Granite Gorge Metamorphic Suite1 see lowest purple and green shading in diagram. These are former sedimentary and volcanic strata that have been transformed by heat and pressure, possibly during the intense upheavals when the dry land was formed on Day 3 of Creation Week.
These were originally basalt lava flows several meters to tens of meters thick. In some outcrops pillow structures have been preserved, testimony to the basalt lavas having originally erupted and flowed under water onto the Creation Week ocean floor. Metamorphic rocks are not always easy to date using radio-isotopes. Results obtained usually signify the “date” of the metamorphism, but they may also yield the “age” of the original volcanic or sedimentary rock.
The “age” or “date” is calculated from the amount of the daughter isotope produced by radioactive decay of the parent isotope. In Grand Canyon, the “date” of metamorphism of the basalt lavas to form these Brahma amphibolites has been determined as Ma million years ago , based on U-Pb dating of minerals in the overlying Vishnu Schist and underlying Rama Schist that formed during the metamorphism.