[EDITORIAL] Our View: Grand Canyon pipeline replacement vital as crowds grow

(Editor’s note: Opinion pieces are published for discussion purposes only.)

Randy Wilson | Arizona Daily Sun

It’s been one year and one national election since the 100th birthday celebrations for the National Park Service. With the economy still perking along, visitation at the Grand Canyon and many other parks continues at near record levels – it’s as if the party never ended. And with the Grand Canyon ready to celebrate its own centennial in 2019, last year’s record of 5.9 million visitors might not last long.

So it’s encouraging that the park has finally been given the green light to replace the decrepit 16-mile water pipeline that serves all of the South Rim. This is the line that starts at Roaring Springs halfway up the North Kaibab Trail, runs down to Phantom Ranch, then up the Bright Angel Trail to Grand Canyon Village. It has broken 80 times since 2010 due mainly to age – after six decades, the thin aluminum can’t withstand the extreme variations in temperature and moisture in the Canyon, especially during violent storms.


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