Backcountry access dispute near Grand Canyon's rim

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Updated: 12/28/2013 3:09 am

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Grand Canyon National Park's superintendent is drawing the ire of avid backcountry users over a plan to seasonally allow just one permit a week onto remote wilderness near the South Rim.

The Great Thumb area borders tribal lands and is only accessed by traveling through Havasupai Tribe boundaries, with a 40-minute drive on dirt roads from Tusayan.

The Arizona Daily Sun reports the area offers pristine hiking and some of the best canyoneering within the park.

In a letter to the chairman of the Havasupai Tribe, Park Superintendent David Uberuaga offered to seasonally limit permits onto a piece of land that covers some 90,000 acres of remote wilderness.

Backcountry users are upset because they believe their access is being limited and the process is being carried out in private.

©2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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