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Geology Books on the Grand Canyon and Colorado Plateau


The Grand Canyon is the crown jewel of the Colorado Plateau, a region of four states (Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah) with a phenomenal concentration of national and state parklands. Here is a selection of books to increase your understanding and enjoyment of this iconic region.

Ancient Landscapes of the Colorado Plateau

Paleogeography of the Plateau
Grand Canyon Association
This unique book is a collection of paleogeographic maps—scientific visualizations of the former landscape—of the Colorado Plateau, showing the environments that gave rise to the different major rock formations there. The maps are by Ron Blakey, a master of the form, and ably explained by educator Wayne Ranney.

Carving Grand Canyon: Evidence, Theories, and Mystery

Carving Grand Canyon
Grand Canyon Association
Wayne Ranney has devoted his career as a researcher, educator and guide to the Grand Canyon. His participation in the scientific debate makes this book the best and most up-to-date treatment of the 150-year affair between geologists and this magnificent and puzzling geological destination.

An Introduction to Grand Canyon Fossils

Introduction to Grand Canyon Fossils
Grand Canyon Association
Longtime canyon guide Dave Thayer produced this slim, sound introduction to the ancient life recorded up and down the walls of the Grand Canyon. It's an appetizing way to absorb a wider introduction to geology, and it's about enjoying the fossil resources of this national park without damaging them.

Life in Stone: Fossils of the Colorado Plateau

Life in Stone
Grand Canyon Association
This book is similar to Dave Thayer's Introduction to Grand Canyon Fossils, but goes into greater depth and width. Christa Sadler, a paleontologist, covers the whole Colorado Plateau and presents the fossils in greater depth as well. Suitable for the serious fossil hunter.
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