Canyon Diablo (canyon)

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For the nearby ghost town and other uses, see Canyon Diablo, Arizona, and Canyon Diablo (disambiguation).
Canyon Diablo
View of Canyon Diablo, Interstate 40, and Two Guns (ghost town), Arizona.jpg
View of Canyon Diablo, Interstate 40, and Two Guns (ghost town)
Coordinates 35°17′46″N 110°59′21″W / 35.29611°N 110.98917°W / 35.29611; -110.98917Coordinates: 35°17′46″N 110°59′21″W / 35.29611°N 110.98917°W / 35.29611; -110.98917
Railroad bridge over Canyon Diablo in the 1880s

Canyon Diablo (Navajo: Kin Łigaaí) is a canyon near Two Guns in Northern Arizona. Part of it is located in the Navajo Indian Reservation.

Canyon Diablo was named by U. S. Army Lieutenant Amiel Weeks Whipple. Whipple, of the Army's Topographical Engineers, made a survey in 1853-1854 along the 35th parallel. In mid December 1853 Whipple found a steep canyon while riding west from a point near Winslow with a reconnaissance party. He named the canyon, Canyon Diablo.

The canyon passes 3 miles (4.8 km) west of Meteor Crater. The community of Canyon Diablo, Arizona on the edge of the canyon about 12 miles (19 km) northwest of the crater was the closest community to the crater when scientists began investigating the crater. Consequently, the meteorite that caused the crater is officially called the Canyon Diablo meteorite.[1]

Canyon Diablo ("devil canyon") is the Spanish translation of the Native American name.[2] The 1930 Canyon Diablo highway bridge, once used by U.S. Route 66 to cross the canyon south of the present I-40 bridges, is on the National Register of Historic Places.[3]

The BNSF Canyon Diablo railroad bridge is a well-known railfan site.[4]


They Came to the Mountain, Platt Cline, Northern Arizona University and Northland Press 1976.