Tucson, Arizona 2021-06-13 19:00:00 –
By April of this year, the Grand Canyon had recorded 425,978 visitors and spent 6.6 million hours in the park, according to park service data. That’s an improvement, but it’s still 24% less than the 563,898 visitors who spent 8.7 million hours in the park in April 2019.
Sullivan said backcountry permit applications “started a little later in February and March” than in normal years, but “almost the same as the previous year” in April and May.
However, there are still challenges.
Sullivan said the park’s infrastructure continues to impede operations. For example, problems with the sewage treatment facility at the Bright Angel Campground at the bottom of the canyon are reducing the number of people who can camp there.
“The largest campsite in the canyon operates at half the capacity, so it’s currently limited,” Sullivan said, accommodating 55 campers instead of the usual 110.
Another challenge is the COVID-19 restrictions on international travel, as foreign tourists make up the majority of the Grand Canyon’s tourism business. Charlie Hendrix, Tsusayan Town Manager, said it caused a “kind of delay” in returning to normal business.
“We have great support locally and are very excited, but we haven’t traveled abroad yet,” she said.
National park visitors – and money – are coming back after 2020 plunge | Local news Source link National park visitors – and money – are coming back after 2020 plunge | Local news