Grand Canyon Fog Conceals Wild Horse Convention

Foggy Park

Photo by Erin Whittaker of the National Park Service

A rare weather event that has thrilled tourists visiting Arizona’s Grand Canyon provided the necessary privacy coverage for the decennial meeting of North American wild horses held in the National Park earlier this week.

The Grand Canyon has been enveloped with what visitor have described as a “river of clouds” due to an atmospheric phenomenon known as a temperature inversion. According to the National Weather Service:

Once the sun goes down, the ground loses heat very quickly, and this cools the air that is in contact with the ground… conditions that favor the development of a strong surface inversion are calm winds, clear skies, and long nights

Whatever the scientific explanation for the effect, park visitors were thrilled by the beautiful vistas and ethereal ambiance created by the fluffy haze. Gabe Thorburn, a camper at the site explained that:

It felt like I was in a magical place hidden from the outside world

While the visitors and tourists appreciated the stunning views at the Canyon, the cloud cover also served to conceal a convention that has been occurring once a decade for centuries. The wild horse herds had gathered to discuss issues of common interest to their community, and used the inversion to keep their gathering quiet.

At the top of the agenda for this years meeting, were the improving relationship with the local Havasupai tribe, legal developments regarding horse slaughter, and clarification on the issue of horses in New York’s Central Park.

As is traditional, the Convention ended with the awe-inspiring Thundering Hooves, a horse dance renowned for its majesty and grace.

Although the equine ambassadors were careful to limit the human observers of their proceedings to a trusted few, they were glad that people were able to appreciate the inversion. For though they are wild, they know that their lives are inextricably linked to those they refer to as the two legs.

Foggy Clouds

Photo by Erin Whittaker of the National Park Service