Friday, May 18, 2012

A Complete Park: V. NPS Keeps Working, 1971-2; (edited 8/17/12)

With a new Congress, Goldwater and Udall told NPS on 26 Feb 1971 to go ahead and draft a Grand Canyon National Park bill. Goldwater asked for information on mining, hunting, logging, and private lands. He especially requested details on grazing permittees. 

NPS was already looking at some new proposals:
1. Adding even more of Havasu-Cataract canyon;
2. Increasing the size of the Coconino addition on the south rim (which resulted in a larger rectangle drawn on maps, even though the acreage stayed at 640); 
3. Making the Kanab addition bigger;
4. Considering several options for the western extension. One went down to Separation Canyon. NPS thought this was logical because of the outstanding scenic & geologic values, and because the  free flowing river ended there. Such an extension would eliminate the possibility of a dam. A shorter extension, only down to Diamond Creek, would include an important take-out location for river trips, but would leave the damsite out of the Park. If the extension were even less generous, going only to Whitmore Canyon, a major river take-out would still be included, and Lava Falls, a major geologic feature, would be protected from helicopters ferrying river passengers.

LMNRA took on the task of summarizing the resources in the western Canyon in a 2 March 1971 report as follows: 
Mining: There were two leases. The Copper Mountain mine had never been patented, and was controlled by Big Divide Mining. LMNRA had no idea about the number of claims, only that there were lots & lots because of uranium rushes.
Hunting: LM knew of only two attempts at bighorn hunts. 
Logging was absent.
There was one state section.
Grazing: Eight allotments were affected. Their viability depended on weather. Detailed impact was based on the map of boundaries drawn on township lines the previous year. The Snyder allotment would show only a small effect since it had a spring. A small amount was taken from the Schultz Spring allotment. Most of Cedar Spring & C. Bundy were taken; also one-half of Frog Cane, all of Paws Pocket and River, and one-third of Big Springs.  

In March, GCNP Sup't Lovegren talked with Goldwater's aide, T. Emerson, about grazing. They determined that impacting so many allotments was an obstacle. Lovegren understood that the boundary had to be re-figured since LMNRA Sup't Bean had told Senator Bible of Nevada (chairman of the subcommittee on Parks) the boundaries would not adversely affect any grazing allotment. Bible had then said he would accept Bean's judgement on the proposal provided there was no such adverse effect. So on March 5 Lovegren supplied a new boundary line drawn on a map showing grazing allotments. This line would avoid grazing impact while still providing the necessary protection of the main stream. The areas with 8/9- numbers on the maps below, that Lovegren used, were the allotments, and Lovegren's line (orange on the original) went along allotment boundaries more or less carefully. These maps show the part along lower Parashant-Andrus Canyon; the map on the left shows a bit more detail for allotment 8/9-228.

Here is the full line drawn to meet the Bible-Bean criterion of using the topographically based grazing allotment boundaries:

This Lovegren line bequeathed to the Park still another GCNP boundary drawn to satisfy a resource industry (in this case, one on its way out; grazing on this part of LMNRA has long since been ended.) This western extension would have been about 35 kac smaller than if on section lines.

All these considerations were translated onto NPS map 113-20000-C, Mar 1971, below, representing the thinking of the GCNP staff. It includes the new idea of an extension into lands the Havasupai wanted, although there is no justification in the papers I have for the big extension southeast along Cataract Creek

Comparing the maps above and below, it appears that the line got pushed downstream a bit beyond Separation, to about river mile 242 before following allotment lines over the Sanup to the Shivwits rim. 

That was the west half of NPS' early 1971 considerations.
The east half, little changed from the previous version, started at Navajo bridge, and went downstream just on the rims of Marble Canyon. 
It drew in a tripled Coconino addition-- although the acreage was still shown as 640. The rectangle is not quite a full section thick, though certainly more than a half-section; this discrepancy remained a puzzle never explicitly resolved. There is not in the material I have a justification for this change from the original idea of adding two-½-sections = 640-acre. 

Lovegren's willingness to change from section lines to allotment lines to delineate the lands transferred from LMNRA was reinforced in April when Bean wrote Bible that the proposal was consistent with "our" ideas about LMNRA lands being added to Park. He asserted it would preserve the character of the Canyon, facilitate river management, and influence any proposals to build dams. 

In response to the February 1971 request from Goldwater & Udall, this March bill draft came up with deletions of 49,250 acres and additions of 316,020. It contained a provision for a one-mile easement on the Marble rim, with recreational agreements to be reached with the Navajo and Hualapai. 

Also, Saylor had introduced HR 1139; with no big changes from his earlier ideas,  it was still an anti-dam bill. 

In mid-March, NPS made its draft master plan ideas public, setting up four public hearings in May in order to hear from those in the public who were the most intense advocates and opponents of significant Park enlargement. In an Arizona Republic article, outdoors writer Ben Avery reported that the NPS ideas differed from the Goldwater/Udall bills. He emphasized that NPS wanted to eliminate any provision allowing a reclamation project in the Park and the extended boundary would block any Bridge Canyon dam. The NPS plan also offered a Wilderness proposal, a curb on aircraft flying below the rims, and still hoped for a Marble scenic easement. Avery referred to the ever hotter issue of commercial motorized use of the river, and Goldwater's opposition to it. These were all issues that would be fought over in Congress as it took up Park enlargement. Avery concluded that there were no "controversial" additions, and large grazing areas would be "released". 

NPS in DC assured Emerson in early April it was reviewing the lower extension to eliminate grazing, and summarized the other LMNRA information. 

In formulating its position for the hearings, Arizona Game & Fish commented on each of the proposals. It pushed for a Marble rim boundary without any easement beyond. Although the Lower Kanab was not supposedly an area of multiple use, there was hunting, grazing, sightseeing, hiking, bighorn range, and an important trail. AG&F wanted the Monument plateau lands out of any Park, with an additional piece around Mt. Emma to go to LMNRA. Admittedly, it has its Park qualities, and there are trails. Hunting access is so difficult, it is done by trophy hunters, so there would be little impact on the deer herd in any case. On the south side, Long Mesa was a favorite of hunters; bighorn could be found there. Anyway, the Havasupai will object to the Park including it. The extension downstream had "political and economic overtones". The AG&F official statement that month "agreed" with the deletions, and suggested Mt Emma should go into LMNRA. While not objecting to the Kanab addition, it stood against Long Mesa and LM lands being added. It had no desire for regional agency cooperation. Furthermore, hunters might go along with Long Mesa, but not the bigger Cataract Creek addition that GCNP was floating in the master plan. 

The Canyon's "staff member", Senator Case, introduced S 1882, "a bill to enlarge the boundaries …" on 17 May. He called himself that from the quote by J.B. Priestley: "Every member or officer of the Federal Government ought to remind himself, with triumphant pride, that he is on the staff of the Grand Canyon." His Park bill was unchanged from 1969. In his statement, Case noted the dams were a past threat, but tourism posed problems. Tripling the size of the Park and unifying its administration would help meet difficulties. He spoke of the "whole canyon area" being managed on an "intelligible and coordinated basis". He listed the main stream and all damsites, the Paria, Kanab, Havasu, Whitmore, and Parashant canyons, the Kaibab, Uinkarets, and Shivwits plateaus, and Toroweap Valley; a Park of 2.14 million acres. No Hualapai, Havasupai, or Navajo lands would be taken; a Wilderness study would be carried out. A bill to delight complete-Park advocates.

In a statement of the Havasupai position at the time, Lee Marshall spoke of their need for plateau lands for grazing and homes. The Hilltop was needed as a control point for tourism into Supai and Havasu Canyon. NPS answered that there would be no impact on the Havasupai since the Park did not want any more plateau land; it would honor Havasupai grazing permits in the Park. However, in July, Lovegren told a Havasupai lawyer he did not want to discuss a Havasupai request for a water pipeline. 

The overall state of relations was indicated by a letter from Goldwater to Sierra Club SW Rep. McComb in July; Goldwater thanking him for the "unusually fine" photo he had sent as a peace gesture. The delegation was to meet on the bill, but there would be no changes, since it takes in all the land NPS thinks it can supervise. NPS opposed strongly the Sierra Club desire to add more land to the north and west. Goldwater went on that there would be "a real problem" with the Navajo if they "do not want to sell (or) lose any land right up to the rim". We must obtain this, he asserted, if "the whole effort is to mean anything." [I find that a most curious opinion, but it sounds like a genuine Goldwaterism.] He suggested  --and I doubt this-- some Arizonans wanted to add the Hualapai side of the damsite; however, we all agree the dam is a dead issue. Finally, he argued that the Canyon is going to have 3 million visitors a year soon (thinking of the national bicentennial) and "there is no way in God's green world that that many people can be accommodated with the present facilities". Pure Goldwater -- irrelevant point pithily made. He concluded, it is "most important" to pass a bill, and hoped "the Sierra Club will not put obstacles in its way". 

I do not know how McComb reacted to that little insult from a former dam promoter. As you will see, we did try to work with Goldwater in 1972-3, but when that broke down, we gave push for slap. It all might have gone differently if he could have recognized our being out front on the Park expansion issue, and accepted a different template than the NPS stitch-a-bit, mend-a-bit mindset. Indeed, the NPS flipping and flopping changes on boundary issues in 1966-72 were dizzying, though I am not sure whether to credit this "St. Vitus Dance" just to the superintendent or to an NPS lack of basic understanding of the Canyon.

NPS adjusted to the various anti-Park pressures in map 113-20000D, July 1971; again, showing only the west half:

First, NPS reduced the downstream extension to 92,700 acres by bringing it back to river mile 234, which is two miles shy of including the damsite. Next, they offered to add the Mount Emma deletion to the hunters bag. (However, in the next, August, map, 113-20000-E, this offer was dropped.) NPS drew more careful lines for the Tuckup and Jensen deletions, reducing them by 3000+ acres. In a complete reversal, they dropped their big expansion south of the river around Havasu, and responded to Havasupai arguments by offering two big deletions (Tenderfoot and Topocoba) that would be made part of the Havasupai Reservation.

In justifying these changes, the Region wrote to DC in Sep 1971, first, on the deletions: 
Slide Mtn. is flat, with little forest. There are some volcanics, but better examples exist. Grazing was the primary use. Tuckup is well back from rim. It is not a buffer nor does it have park caliber features; it would be best in multiple use. Jensen, too, is flat, sparse, and grazed. Tenderfoot & Topacoba are flat, with no park features, and back from the rims.The Havasupai need this plateau land.
On additions:
Kanab and Coconino were unchanged. The government objected to the damsite being included, so 
the "Lower Grand Canyon" extension stops at mile 234, but would complete a natural unit near Bridge at Lake Mead's maximum. The riverbed addition along the old Monument was first indicated on the March 1970 map, and repeated on the March, July, & August 1971 versions. The Hualapai were not mentioned as involved in this addition. There is some mystery about it, so:

On another July version, 113-20004A, we have:

drawn showing a one-mile easement above both Marble rims. The phrase "WITH CONCURRENCE OF THE HUALAPAI NATION" is added to "COLORADO RIVERBED BOUNDARY ON THE SOUTH BANKS OF THE RIVER". Then the easement stippling used along Marble was added for a one-mile scenic easement on the downstream extension, though not in the Diamond Creek stretch. (The map is also one of those interesting ones showing the boundary that would result from the changes.) It would seem that the Hualapai made their claim to the river known, and GCNP (as always under Lovegren) yielded, in spite of the various Interior opinions that the Reservation did not go to mid-stream. Another strange aspect of this "riverbed" was that it originally appeared to refer to the 19 miles of river along the old Monument on which the boundary was the north bank. NPS calculated that addition as 2700 acres, or about 142 acres/river-mile, which worked out to a width of ~1200', almost ¼ mile, in a stretch where the "riverbed" is, maybe, 500' across. On the map above, it could refer instead to the river addition downstream, 60-70 miles worth, which in this version would calculate out to a width of 300'. The problem with that is that the figure "2700 acres" stayed the same on all the maps, no matter how far down the river the boundary was to go. Indeed, the acreage stayed the same on every map on which "riverbed" was used, that is, through 1973, when the length was 110 miles. Yet more puzzling was the use of the term "riverbed". One main purpose of the legislation was to get unified administration of the river as it flowed, its surface; this was a strong NPS concern. Would owning the riverbed satisfy that need to control traffic and navigation? The term was not used anywhere else; compare the various phrases about the river and its bank in connection with Marble Canyon (my entries of 18-9 Jul 2010). And where was the southern boundary supposed to be in the so-called Lower Grand Canyon addition, which, as the map shows, says nothing about the bank or concurrence, and may have included another easement? This would be boring nit-picking (well, it IS boring nit-picking) if it were not part of the larger question of the Hualapai claim to the river's middle (haitat, backbone) versus the NPS claim to the historic high water line on river left. Fortunately, the use of "riverbed" was dropped as the legislation progressed. 

The Region's memo of September 1971 opined that conservationists did not have strong support for their position of keeping the deletions in the Park. Also, there would be opposition to land being transferred to the Havasupai, but the main consideration was their desire for a land base. So overall, there would be very little resource conflict in this proposal. To me, just as the Case bill argued for "a more complete Park" based on its concept of the Canyon, and Representative Saylor presented an "anti-damsite" bill, the NPS/Goldwater ideas could be labelled the "no-conflict proposal". But hopes that a bill that satisfied all the anti-park resource interests would slip though unnoticed were not only without principle, they were a fantasy.

In the fall, for some reason, NPS files have lots of letters about the dams.

Then at the end of the year, spurred in part by the Park pushing its Master Plan, the Havasupai launched a major effort, an effort summarized in my entries of July 2011, and more fully in Steve Hirst's book on the Havasupai. The NPS and Forest Service response was to hold several meetings with the Havasupai: December 3, 14, 17, 30, 1971 and January 17 & 31, 1972. There was, Lovegren reported, a general misunderstanding at the start, with the Havasupai antagonistic toward Forest Service land exchanges. The next thing he knew, however, was that Emerson told him the legislation was being held up until Goldwater met with the three tribes. He agreed with Lovegren that the Havasupai and Navajo were cooperative, but the Hualapai were not, having the dam on their mind. (This was a serious mis-reading of the Havasupai stance.) Emerson was to visit in January. Lovegren replied, willing as always, that the Park would give up 63 kac if the Havasupai would agree to certain conditions. He then listed a bunch of mutual grievances that the Havasupai would certainly reject.

Goldwater started 1972 by using a newspaper interview to "blast" and "accuse" the Sierra Club as obstructionists for not "backing off" their own bill.* "We cannot get Senator Case to withdraw his bill...Totally unacceptable to NPS and everyone else in the area." Then he "quipped" about changing the boundary of Atlantic City. He also claimed there were problems because the Navajo wanted to build rim hotels and the Hualapai, their dam. Congress should protect the Canyon from development. The Hualapai only own the south bank. However, there would be no action on his bill since it was an election year. 

An independent activist, Fred Eiseman, then started a chain of connections with Goldwater by writing him in Feb 1972 about problems with river traffic and tourist development. In his reply, Goldwater complained about being opposed by conservation groups and not being able to get his Park bill started. So Eiseman proposed to McComb a "meeting of the minds" of people who have only minor differences. This could avoid any roadblocks that would wreck the whole scheme for protecting the Park. So, Eiseman asked, what are the objections of Park advocates? Cannot the differences be negotiated? Could there be a meeting of concerned individuals, with NPS attending but not dictating? He thought Goldwater would be interested in attending.

I do not have McComb's reply, but in April he did set the Club position out to Lovegren and did write to Goldwater. The latter replied this way: My legislative assistant tells me you have met him and there does appear to be a close similarity in our approaches. However, the national Sierra Club office may be backing unrealistic proposals, far beyond anything acceptable in Arizona. We have been refining the boundaries in the last year, and I hope to introduce a good bill this year. 

One of those refinements caused Lovegren to send a biologist in April to look at the Tenderfoot area asked for by the Havasupai. Another was pointed at by LMNRA wanting a different downstream boundary, the sup't complaining about its impracticality. So, once again, the Region asked in November for data on the boundary revision proposals. By this time, Lovegren had been promoted away, and GCNP had a new superintendent, Merle Stitt, whom I visited when I returned to Arizona in August 1972. Over the past several months, the river traffic management issue had come to a boil, with Goldwater, Eiseman, McComb, NPS, and lots of river people involved. Coincidentally, this made it easier to get the kind of meeting Eiseman had suggested. In effect, the sparring and prelims were over; we were about to move seriously into the main arena. 

Sources: My files.
NPS archives: GCNP, LMNRA, DC
Congressional Record.
AZ Game & Fish Dept files.
*"Arizona Daily Star" ~12 Feb 1972

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