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Crews hike, camp, and rappel to keep power at Grand Canyon

Nearly 6 million people visit the Grand Canyon every year to see beauty that has been labeled one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Generally, they also expect other modern conveniences - like running water and power - during their visit.

Many of those conveniences rely on electricity – pumps to operate water and sewer, HVAC units to heat and cool, and appliances for food.

So when the Grand Canyon National Park Service (GCNPS) completed an inspection of its inner-canyon power system, the team identified several locations in need of repair. Originally put in place in the 1960s, the lines had degraded significantly.

Landscape of the Grand Canyon

Repairing power lines is challenging under normal circumstances, but the locations identified by the Grand Canyon survey took challenging to a whole new level. Many were in hard-to-reach areas in remote locations, deep within the canyon walls.

Some of the work required APS crews to camp for a week along the canyon to have access to the site. They even had to rappel down the canyon walls to access a few of the lines.

Thanks to a coordinated effort between APS, multiple vendors, GCNPS and the surrounding communities, this complex project was executed successfully and safely.

Watch this video to get a behind-the-scenes look at how APS crews navigated this beautiful but rugged terrain to keep power flowing at this national treasure.

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