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The Grand Canyon's east entrance is open again — What you need to know before you visit

April 09, 2021
2 min read
The Grand Canyon's east entrance is open again — What you need to know before you visit
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The east entrance to Grand Canyon National Park is open again after being closed for a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The eastern entry point along with the scenic State Route 64 opened again to visitors on Thursday.

It had been closed due to pandemic restrictions by the Navajo Nation to prevent the spread of coronavirus. The decision to reopen the east gate was made after consulting with tribal leaders and other local officials who determined it was safe.

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"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," Park Superintendent Ed Keable said in a statement. "As vaccine rollouts continue, we recognize the need to normalize our operations and allow for visitors to have a drive-through option on Highway 64."

If you're planning to make a visit, be aware that some COVID-related restrictions remain in place at Desert View. Perhaps the most notable is the fact that the iconic Desert View Watchtower remains closed. You can still take in the breathtaking sight from the Navajo Point

(Photo by John Elk/Getty Images)

Related: The best times to visit The Grand Canyon

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The 22-mile drive along SR 64, the "Desert View Drive," provides a number of stunning vistas, including Duck on a Rock and Grandview Point. Parking is available at each viewpoint. However, no services -- including food, gas, and the campground site -- will be available at Desert View until further notice, due to lack of staffing. The closest place to find such services is about 30 miles away in Cameron.

Also, if you go, don't forget your credit cards. No cash is being accepted for entry at the moment, but you can use the Your Pass Now and America the Beautiful passes. The South Rim section in Grand Canyon Village does have more available service options. You can learn more on the official Grand Canyon website.

Featured image by Getty Images/iStockphoto
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,200 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
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Best premium travel card for value
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10xEarn 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
5xEarn 5x total points on flights through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
3xEarn 3x points on other travel and dining.
1xEarn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,200 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®

    80,000 bonus points
  • Annual Fee

    $550
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

If you are looking to take your premium rewards to the highest level, this card is really a no brainer in our eyes. Chase's Ultimate Rewards make points easy to redeem, with a wide range of 10 airline and three hotel transfer partners and a friendly user interface. Despite the high annual fee, Chase is consistently adding new benefits to keep the card competitive in a fierce premium rewards field.

Pros

  • $300 annual travel credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • Access to Chase Ultimate Rewards hotel and airline travel partners
  • Unlimited 3x points on the broad category of travel and dining
  • 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Broad definitions for travel and dining bonus categories

Cons

  • Steep $550 annual fee
  • May not make sense for people that don't travel frequently
  • You must spend the $300 travel credit before earning 3x points for travel and dining
  • No automatic hotel elite status
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,200 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,200 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more