Category Archives: Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon Railway works toward ‘green’ goal

[Source: Patrick Whitehurst, Williams News] — A number of unique challenges lay ahead for Xanterra Parks and Resorts when it comes to moving forward with the company’s plan for “going greener,” according to Xanterra’s environmental coordinator Morgan O’Connor. While Xanterra itself may be notable among companies with a good track record in terms of good environmental practices, that practice is a little more difficult when it comes to the Grand Canyon Railway, where just the nature of the business lends itself to oil, grease and other environmental hurdles.

O’Connor spoke to members of the Williams Rotary Club during their regular meeting July 3. “The railroad application is a dirty application,” O’Connor said. “There’s a lot of grease, oil that spews everywhere. There have been great strides prior to me coming aboard to make the steam locomotive and the diesels more efficient, getting more miles per gallon. I’m quite impressed with the ability and the skill there over at the locomotive shop to try to move in that direction.” [Note: To read the full article, click here.]

Group seeks help touting trail to Grand Canyon

[Source: Erin Zlomek, Arizona Republic] — The non-profit Western Trails Association made a pitch to the Surprise City Council last week for cross-promotional cooperation, donations and spots on a city-operated TV channel to make a scenic heritage trail reality. The group is in the process of filing for 501(c)(3) status with the goal of mapping out a scenic heritage trail from Surprise to Grand Canyon National Park. The group’s goal is to generate state tourism grants, then market the trail in a similar fashion to historic Route 66 through Arizona.

Association leader Marianne Archibald said she envisions a backroads driving trail winding north from Surprise, with suggested stops at historic Arizona landmarks and museums before landing tourists at the famous gorge. Most tourists now take Interstate 17 north from the Phoenix metro area to the Grand Canyon, bypassing many of the state’s off-the-beaten-path attractions and sometimes forcing them to make day trips of what could be overnight stays that are of more benefit to towns along the way.

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