FINAL RETREAT OR FLAWED COMPROMISE?
From a vigorous, pro-Park System stance in 1976, the final report on potential park land five years later had declined to end up as a comfort to the hunters and ranchers who had been the only ones to make their opinions felt.* Of little interest or pride to the authoring agencies, a May draft was made known through the Federal Register and some local agencies. I.e., notice was not sent out to those who had shown interest during the process; I have nothing in my files to indicate I even knew about the draft. No surprise, then, that (page 6) "response to the Public Review Draft was negligible", though what there was "agreed with the study team's findings". A whimper, indeed.
Fifty pages long, the report's major topics were the story of the study itself, followed by descriptions of the Canyon and the Arizona Strip. The study area's environment, archeology, and land uses were covered, with the conclusions contained in Management Considerations, Options, and Recommendations. The report remains notable for a series of maps that present snapshots of conditions in the area as of 1980. Even more notable is its demonstration of how one agency, NPS, was hemmed in and forced to knuckle under to the combined pressure of two other agencies, USFS and BLM, protecting their turf.