Kings Canyon National Park

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Kings Canyon National Park is a U.S. National Park in the southern Sierra Nevada, east of Fresno, California. The park was established in 1940 and covers 462,901 acres. The park is north of and contiguous with Sequoia National Park; the two are administered by the National Park Service as one unit, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks.

Kings Canyon had been known to white settlers since the mid-1800s, but it was not until John Muir first visited in 1873 that the canyon began receiving attention. Muir was delighted at the canyon's similarity to Yosemite Valley, as it reinforced his theory regarding the origin of both valleys, which, though competing with Josiah Whitney's then-accepted theory that the spectacular mountain valleys were formed by earthquake action, Muir's theory later proved correct: that both valleys were carved by massive glaciers during the last Ice Age.

For nearly fifty years, some wanted to build a dam at the western end of the valley, while others wanted to preserve it as a park. The debate was settled in 1965, when the valley, along with Tehipite Valley, was added to General Grant National Park, established in 1890, and named for the canyon of the Kings River within its boundaries. Kings Canyon is the deepest canyon in the United States with a maximum depth of 8,200 feet. The canyon was carved by glaciers out of granite. The Kings Canyon, and its developed area, Cedar Grove, is the only portion of the main part of the park that is accessible by motor vehicle. Both the Kings Canyon, and its Middle Fork twin, Tehipite Valley, are glacial “Yosemites” , deeply incised glacial gorges with relatively flat floors and towering granite cliffs thousands of feet high. med for the canyon of the Kings River within its boundaries.


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Kings Canyon National Park
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