Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Preserving the Park

By understanding and protecting the fragile natural and cultural resources of Glen Canyon, you can help preserve the park for the future.

Historic and Archeological Sites

Glen Canyon's prehistoric Indian ruins and remains of 19th-century settler and mining activities are protected by the NPS under law. You are invited to visit the five open sites: Defiance House, Three Roof Archeological Site, Colorado River Petroglyph Panel, Lees Ferry Historic District and Lonely Dell Ranch Historic District. (While still open to the public, Three Roof Ruin and Defiance House are no longer immediately accessible by water.) All other sites are closed. You may observe and photograph them from a distance, but entering them is prohibited by law.

Be careful not to disturb any site. Study of these sites is in progress and the movement of any pottery pieces, artifacts or building materials can render the sites useless. Defacement of a site or theft of artifacts carries civil and criminal penalties. Please contact a ranger or any law enforcement official if you find archeological sites defaced, or if you witness someone removing artifacts; (800) 227-7286.

Trash Tracker Program

The Trash Tracker Program is a cooperative effort by the NPS and Lake Powell Resorts & Marinas to clean up the 1,960 miles of Lake Powell's shoreline. Members of the NPS's Volunteers in the Parks (VIP) Program spend five or more days aboard a houseboat-barge cleaning up trash and debris along the shoreline. They bring their own food, personal gear and enthusiasm. The barge logs 3,000 miles annually in this enormously successful program, which is sponsored by ARAMARK.

For information or to volunteer for the Trash Tracker Program, glca/supportyourpark/trashtracker.htm or call (928) 608-6200, or write to the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, P.O. Box 1507, Page, AZ 86040.

People wishing to volunteer specifically at Glen Canyon can also call the Park's Volunteer Coordinator at (928) 608-6200.

Graffiti Removal & Intervention Team (GRIT)

The park has undertaken a new program entitled True GRIT. This program is similar to the popular Trash Tracker program. Volunteers can sign up for a five-day minimum houseboat trip on the lake where they remove modern graffiti. This can be strenuous and very fulfilling work. Volunteers will enjoy embarking from Antelope Point Marina, where this houseboat is moored. For more about this program, visit grit.htm or call (928) 608-6200 or write to the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, P.O. Box 1507, Page, AZ 86040.

Cryptobiotic Crusts

The thin, dark, cryptobiotic crust covering soil along the crevices and edges of sandstone rock is a pioneer organism. Its crusty, clumpy top is a combination of mosses, algae, lichens and fungi. This community requires little nourishment from its surroundings, prevents erosion and provides a nitrogen-enriched area for future plant communities to colonize.

Cryptobiotic crusts can take a century to develop and can be destroyed instantly by a few human steps pulverizing the crust and turning it to dust. When traveling through a cryptobiotic area, stay on rocks or trails. If you absolutely cannot avoid an area, walk single file.

Endangered Species

In this relatively new wildlife preserve, recovery programs to protect endangered species have begun. The razorback sucker, a fish native to the Colorado River, is now an endangered species. An experimental population was placed in the ponds at the Lake Powell National Golf Course in Page, Arizona, in 1996. In the predator-free water, fingerlings grew to maturity and were transistor-implanted for tracking. The adult razorbacks were successfully released into the San Juan River arm of Lake Powell in 1997 and 1998.

Various programs protect other endangered species including the Colorado squawfish, the bony tail chub, the humpback chub, Brady's pincushion and the Jones cycladenia.