The area has seen weather we have not in what many believe to be at least five years. With the droves of visitors heading to Horseshoe Bend, and the increase in visitors to the area to view the monument capped with snow, travel along highway 89 has become precarious, especially with the roads coated in layers of ice.
In taking extra caution to keep both motorists and visitors safe, the parking lot to Horseshoe Bend was closed today. According to city officials, flaggers were allowing tour buses, vehicles with disabled placards, RVs and other large vehicles to enter the lot and diverting all other vehicle traffic to locations where shuttles were being provided.
The flaggers were from Waterhole Canyon Experience, which is the same company that has been working with the City to aid in the parking and pedestrian issues located at Horseshoe Bend.
The main reason for the closure was due to the amount of visitors that were parking and walking along highway 89. The amount of people on the shoulders and in the roads combined with the road conditions prompted the closure.
City officials also state that the diversion of most vehicle traffic to shuttle lots has effectively eliminated all pedestrian traffic along the highway.
While LPNN was out there earlier today, there were no pedestrians walking along highway 89, but the shuttle lots were packed.
City officials do want to remind everyone that there is no parking allowed along highway 89. If you do park your vehicle there, you will be cited.
It is anticipated that the parking lot will be reopened to all traffic after the holidays, once the amount of visitors to Horseshoe Bend have decreased. Some within the city anticipate that will begin tomorrow, January 2.
During the holiday season, there have been many tourists that have visited the area. While out on a report for road conditions New Year's Eve day, LPNN came across droves of tourists walking along highway 89 to get to Horseshoe Bend because the regular parking lot was full.
Part of the agreement between the City of Page and Waterhole Canyon Experience is that the company is able to utilize the City's lot at the corner of Highway 89 and 98 as a parking lot and staging area for shuttling tourists to Horseshoe Bend. You can read more about the agreement between the City of Page and Waterhole Canyon Experience here.
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