Twisted tree on south rim, Grand Canyon National Park, Wyoming, October 7, 2011.
The tree is probably a Utah Juniper, as it is the most common juniper in Arizona. A short tree, it is an extremely slow growing plant that may live as long as 650 years. Under very severe site conditions, Utah junipers can subsist in very stunted forms – a 6-inch tree with a 24-inch taproot may be over 50 years old. Utah junipers thrive on very dry sites and usually occur in areas with hot, dry summers and cold, wet winters.