Local News

Grand Canyon National Park Re-Opens East Entrance Gate

April 7, 2021

The East Entrance to the Grand Canyon National Park will open April 8th according to a news release from the National Parks Service

The release states: "Park officials, working with tribal and state officials, stakeholders and community leaders, announced the reopening of the Park's east entrance gate this week. The east entrance, along Arizona State Highway (Hwy) 64, has been closed since April 1, 2020. The intent of the closure has been to minimize visitor traffic through the Navajo Nation and other communities east of the Park, respecting the health and safety need of park neighbors during the COVID-19 pandemic."

The decison was made  based on input from the Navajo Nation, along with state and local officials and community members.  Park Superintendent Ed Keable stated, "Over the past year, we have continued to coordinate with local Cameron Chapter and tribal officials from the Navajo Nation, as well as other stakeholders and business leaders on the east gate closure. As vaccine rollouts continue, we recognize the need to normalize our operations and allow for visitors to have a drive-through option on Hwy 64."  

Tusayan Mayor Clarinda Vail praised the decision in her most recent newsletter, "I am thrilled that The Grand Canyon National Park is opening the East Rim Gate and that past travel patterns can resume. This gives our guests more options for their travel plans on where to enter or exit The Grand Canyon National Park South Rim."

Most COVID-19 restrictions will remain in place for those driving through the Navajo Nation.  All roads other than state and federal highways will be closed to non-residential traffic. Mask wearing is required at all locations on the Nation. For more information on Navajo Nation guidance, please visit the Navajo Department of Health website.

The NPS advises visitors to the Grand Canyyon no services--including food, gas, and the campground--will be available at Desert View until further notice. These services will open as soon as staffing allows. The nearest services available to Desert View are in Cameron, AZ, about 30 miles east of the Desert View developed area. Other services are currently available on the South Rim in Grand Canyon Village. Credit cards, Your Pass Now, and America the Beautiful passes will be accepted for entry. Cash will not be accepted at this time.

 For a complete list of available services and open facilities on the South Rim, please consult the Grand Canyon National Park website.