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A small plane taking seven tourists from Finland on a sightseeing trip over the Grand Canyon made a forced landing Saturday in a remote area high above the Colorado River, officials said.

The pilot of the Air Nevada plane and the passengers escaped serious injury, according to the airline's director of operations, Lew Kaplan."It was not a crash," Kaplan said from the company's Las Vegas, Nev., headquarters. "The airplane may have suffered some minor damage, but it was not a crash."

The Cessna 207 was en route from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon airport when it made a forced landing on high, flat ground above the Colorado River in an area known as The Esplanade, said National Park Service spokesman Chuck Lundy.

The pilot and passengers were taken by helicopter to a medical clinic here and were undergoing checkups, Lundy said. He said the Grand Canyon National Park's rescue team had reported only minor injuries, including one possible back injury.