KTAR (Phoenix, AZ) radio
Wednesday, September 20, 2023, 4:15 AM
Grand Canyon National Park announces closures related to waterline construction
PHOENIX — As Grand Canyon National Park officials prepare for construction on the Transcanyon Waterline, upcoming closures that will affect tourism in the area were recently announced.
One closure is already in place, but a handful of locations won’t be closed off until later this year or next.
What’s being closed due to Transcanyon Waterline construction?
Silver Bridge was closed over the weekend and is scheduled to reopen Dec. 31, 2025, the National Park Service said in a press release.
Two trail closures will go into effect in October, starting with the Rim Trail in front of Bright Angel Lodge with a detour going around the lodge, from Oct. 1 through Nov. 17.
The second closure will be in place from Oct. 14 through March 14, 2025, at Plateau Point Trail from the Tonto Trail junction to Plateau Point.
The Bright Angel Trail from the Trailhead to Silver Bridge (which includes Havasupai Gardens Campground) will be closed from Dec. 1 to April 14.
Then, Bright Angel Trail from Havasupai Gardens to Silver Bridge will be closed from Dec. 2, 2024, to March 14, 2025.
Finally, the Bright Angel Campground will be closed Dec. 19, 2024, to May 9, 2025.
The South Kaibab Trail will remain open for private river trips during Bright Angel Trail closures, although some mule rides will be suspended from Dec. 1 to April 14.
All visitors and hikers are highly encouraged to follow NPS rules, stay on designated trails and no attempt to go around a closure.
The construction areas and schedules are subject to change.
Why is a new Transcanyon Waterline necessary?
The Transcanyon Waterline is an approximately 12-mile water pipeline built in the 1960s to provide water to many nearby locations.
There have been more than 85 major breaks in the waterline since 2010, many of which were expensive to fix, threatened the safety of employees and had negative impacts on visitor experience, NPS said.
Additionally, access to the inner canyon – where the breaks usually happen – are only accessible by helicopter and trail.
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