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Grand Canyon National Park to update aging water delivery system; close Bright Angel Trail

Grand Canyon National Park moves water about 12 and half miles through a pipeline that runs from the North Rim to the South.

But the line breaks frequently - since 2010, the pipeline and infrastructure has broken 85 times.

The park will begin a project to repair it, but it will shut down a popular trail in December.

In October, crews will begin to upgrade the aging system, and most of the Bright Angel Trail will close from December through mid-April 2024.

Although about a half-mile of the trail will remain open. Visitors who want to hike to the Colorado River can use the South Kaibab Trail.

"And so if folks you know want more detailed information, kind of the backstory of the pipeline and the history behind it, and how it came to be, there’s a lot of great information on our website for the Transcanyon Waterline," said park official Joelle Baird.

The park hopes to complete the entire project in 2027.

It recently lifted water restrictions caused by the aging infrastructure.

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Ron Dungan was a senior field correspondent at KJZZ from 2020 to 2024.