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Grand Canyon National Park to increase South Rim access for Memorial Day weekend

Grand Canyon National Park's South Rim will be open May 22-25 for limited entry and recreational access.

GRAND CANYON VILLAGE, Ariz. — After the park initially began opening up South Rim viewpoints on May 15, Grand Canyon National Park announced Wednesday it will increase access to the South Rim for Memorial Day weekend, between May 22 and May 25.

Grand Canyon National Park's South Rim will be open May 22-25 for limited entry and recreational access.

The South entrance will be open from 4-10 a.m. for visitors to enter the park. The entrance will close at 10 a.m. and visitors already inside the park can remain for day use access until sunset. 

Grand Canyon National Park says entrance fees should be paid at automated fee machines or by purchasing a pass in advance at third-party vendors or online here

The following areas and services will be open for visitors:  

  • Day hiking on inner canyon trails.
  • Limited food and beverage services at Market Plaza, Bright Angel Bicycles, El Tovar patio, and near hotels.
  • Bicycle and wheelchair rentals at Bright Angel Bicycles.
  • The Rim Trail and Greenway Trail system located outside of the residential area.
  • East Desert View Drive is open until Navajo Point, where vehicles will turn around.

The following facilities and areas remain closed at this time, due to public health concerns. 

  • The East entrance on the South Rim and the Desert View Watchtower area.
  • Visitor centers, museums, and shuttle buses.
  • Lodging, restaurants, campgrounds on the rim, camper services and trailer village.
  • Center Road and access through the South Rim residential housing area.
  • The Colorado River, North Rim and Tuweep area.

The park says existing backcountry permits for hikers camping overnight will be honored but there will be no new overnight camping permits for the inner canyon. When hiking below the rim, a method to treat water should be included with gear. 

Visitors that come to the park via U.S. Route 89 between Flagstaff or northern Arizona and Cameron will be traveling through the Navajo Nation, which requires face masks to be worn at public facilities and businesses to slow the spread of COVID-19.  

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released guidelines for those planning to visit parks and recreation facilities during this time, which can be found here.

Credit: CDC

The park says it will continue to monitor all park functions to ensure that visitors adhere to CDC guidance for mitigating risks associated with the transmission of COVID-19 and take any additional steps necessary to protect public health. 

Further details on Grand Canyon National Park operations during this time can be found here.  

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