Horseshoe Bend, Arizona, USA
© Michael Dunn/Getty Image
Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
Today we’re visiting Arizona in the United States to see Horseshoe Bend. Known as the ‘east rim of the Grand Canyon’, it’s actually about 225 kilometres from the other rims and is really more a part of nearby Glen Canyon. This beautiful view exists thanks to something called an ‘entrenched meander’. Around six million years ago, the area around Horseshoe Bend was much closer to sea level. The Colorado River, following the path of least resistance, meandered and became trapped when the Colorado Plateau uplifted about five million years ago. Over time, the river water cut through exposed sandstone, forming the 305-metre-deep, 270-degree horseshoe-shaped bend.
Horseshoe Bend used to be popular with locals, until social media emerged and spread photos like this one. Now, nearly two million tourists a year hike to this splendour. It’s believed that, eventually, the Colorado River will cut through the neck of the bend. So, if you want a photo here, you only have another million years or so.