We recently received an email communication from the Grand Canyon National Park regarding their handling of Special Use Permits during this COVID-19 pandemic. As of today, this information this has not been added to the Grand Canyon National Park website, so I wanted to make this available through our own website for anyone that needs to know. See below:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended participation in a program called “15 Days to Slow the Spread.” This is a nationwide effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 through implementation of social distancing. This program advises against social gatherings and avoiding discretionary travel. In this context, social gathering is defined as a group of 10 or more people.
In order to adhere to the CDC’s recommendations, GRCA is revoking all SUPs issued through March 31, 2020 with approved group sizes of 10 or more people. SUPs issued for events taking place through March 31, 2020, with approved group sizes of nine or less people are unaffected. The current guidance authorizes group sizes up to 50 between April 1 and mid-May, though that is subject to change as the COVID-19 response develops.
The park is recommending the development of contingency plans as local, state, and federal recommendations are subject to change.
We apologize for any inconvenience. Our office will be happy to work with you to reschedule events as staff time allows. The best method to communicate with the Commercial Permits Office is via email at: GRCA_Permits_Mail@nps.gov. Although the Commercial Permits Office will continue to process SUP applications, no new permits will be issued at this time for events greater than 10 people.
Please note that a previous update for permit processing times may be extended due to COVID-19: https://www.nps.gov/grca/learn/news/grand-canyon-permit-processing-updates.htm.