THE GRAND CANYON, YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK — Of all the marvels of the Yellowstone National Park, the most sublime is the Grand Canyon. Through this the Yellowstone River, which is a tributary of the Missouri, flows in one place for twenty continuous miles between perpendicular cliffs only about 200 yards apart and from 1200 to 1500 feet in height! At the entrance to this part of the Canyon the whole river makes a stupendous leap of 360 feet, in what are known as the ‘‘Lower Falls.” The sides of this gigantic chasm have literally almost all the colors of the rainbow displayed upon their vertical surfaces. Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet and white tints are constantly succeeding one another here in wonderful variety, thus lighting up with glory countless architectural forms, which Nature it would seem, had fashioned here to make the proudest works of man appear diminutive and tame. These colors doubtless have been formed by the percolating through the cliffs of the hot mineral waters from the neighboring springs. Distinguished painters have sadly declared that any adequate representation of these brilliant, variegated hues is utterly beyond the power of human art. What an unrivaled combination is there, therefore, in this Canyon, of awe-inspiring grandeur and enchanting beauty! And what a magnificent pathway has been given to the Yellowstone River! Leaving the famous Yellowstone Lake enclosed by snow-clad mountains, it passed through a series of rapids and a fall of 140 feet before it even reaches the Grand Canyon, and just beyond this it receives a tributary which in its haste to join it makes a leap of 156 feet! Thus cradled in sublimity, the Yellowstone River must be called in some respects the most extraordinary stream upon our continent. (from John L. Stoddard, Glimpses of the world; a portfolio of photographs of the marvelous works of God and man – 1892)


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