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Yosemite National Park (36 images)

About 10 million years ago, the Sierra Nevada Mountains were uplifted and then tilted to form Yosemite's gentle western slopes and the more dramatic eastern slopes. The uplift increased the steepness of stream and river beds, creating deep, narrow canyons. About 1 million years ago glaciers formed at the higher alpine meadows and moved down the river valleys. The downslope movement of the ice masses cut and sculpted the U-shaped valley that attracts so many visitors to its scenic vistas today.