Well, this was our last journey of the year -- and it was a good one! Mr. Jack, Miss Elaine, Emily and I took the train from Williams, Arizona, 60 miles to the Grand Canyon. The train was really neat. The car we were in was a double-decker and we were on top. It's called a vistadome (vista means view) and we could see everything on both sides of the train. They served us snacks, too. We all liked those!
This is Emily at the Grand Canyon. Miss Elaine is always careful not to put us in dangerous spots. It was a loooooonnnnnggggg way down to the bottom of the canyon -- about a mile.
If you look hard, you can see a squiggly line going down into the canyon. People walk down it to get to the bottom. Some of them ride mules down. I think it would be very scary so I'm glad we didn't have time to do it.
This is me, Tiger, at another spot on the rim of the canyon. The canyon is HUGE! It runs for about 277 miles -- farther than the distance from Edmond to Dallas! It is impossible to take a photograph that gives you the true idea of what it looks like. You can only see little pieces at a time. But Miss Elaine did her best -- she came home with over 1000 pictures from our trip. (No, you don't have to look at all 1000!)
Do you see that river in the bottom of the canyon? That's the Colorado River. Over millions of years that river carved the canyon into the flat land you can see on top of the canyon. As the river cut deeper into the earth, it revealed many layers of rock. The dark rocks right by the river are some of the oldest rocks on earth. The higher in the canyon you get, the younger the rocks are. Geologists can "read" the layers to learn how the land was formed.
Here's a secret if you like taking pictures. Pictures taken late in the afternoon or early in the morning are often prettier because of the light. Look at some of the earlier pictures in this post. They are nice but not as colorful as this one. Miss Elaine took this right before sunset.
She took this picture just as the sun was coming up -- at 5:43 in the morning. It was really cold that morning. Emily and I were glad she let us stay in bed! See how the early light turns the rocks a more brilliant yellow and red?
We loved the Grand Canyon but soon it was time to get back on the train. Our adventures weren't over, though. As we were coming back to Williams, we looked out the window and saw masked men on horses racing beside the train. Soon the train stopped. Robbers! (But not real ones!) They came through the train and pretended to rob the passengers -- just like train robbers used to do in the Old West. Emily and I played along with their game. And we got home safely!
It's been a great year and Emily and I have enjoyed sharing our travels with you. There are lots of wonderful places to see and people to meet. We hope you have a great summer. We'll be staying with Miss Kysar and Mrs. Beasley so maybe you could come say "hi" next year when you are 3rd graders.
Tiger and Emily (and Miss Elaine and Mr. Jack)