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Grand Canyon River Trips, Trails Set To Reopen After COVID-19 Closure

Matt York/AP

Grand Canyon National Park officials will expand recreational access as part of their phased-in approach to reopening the park.

On Friday, day hiking on inner canyon trails will again be allowed and existing backcountry permits will be honored. No new overnight camping permits, however, will be issued.

On June 14, all river trips will be allowed to resume with some mitigation measure required for commercial operators. Those with current permits can launch, but no new permits will be issued until at least the end of June.

In addition, on Friday the South Rim entrance station will expand its hours from 4 a.m. to 2 p.m. each day. Visitors can remain in the park until sunset. Then on June 5, the South Rim entrance station will open 24 hours a day along with limited commercial services and some lodging and campgrounds. The North Rim will open July 1 for day use only.

The canyon’s east entrance and the Desert View Watchtower and campground will remain closed out of concern for public health.

Navajo Nation leaders have urged the National Park Service and U.S. Interior Secretary David Bernhardt not to reopen the Grand Canyon as the tribe experiences the highest COVID-19 infection rate in the country.

For more infomation on Grand Canyon National Park's reopening, see the National Park Service's website

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