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Flagstaff History: Grand Canyon saw attendance grow 25% on way to setting record

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100 years ago

1922: There was no attempt made by the Sun to gather a list of those who wandered off, afoot, by car and by horse Sunday morning to celebrate the opening of the deer and turkey season. Just take your telephone directory and you will have a partial list. For the number who went, multiply the names in the directory by four or five. The season opened more viciously this year than last. That is, if the word leaves you gasping, there were more deer and turkey brought in on Sunday than on the first day last year. Dannie Campbell at first thought his 300-pound buck, which he had several hours before noon, was the first shot that day. But others later claimed that distinction, and Dannie had to be content with the knowledge that his was the biggest of the lot.

Walter Lindblom reports that the buck fever he and a friend got along with their buck was worse than the Malta fever ever was.

Jimmy Gregg got his buck early in the morning up back of the reservoir. George Wade and George Bailey divided a buck and a turkey. John Seay hit a buck twice with a shotgun, so he said. The buck hasn't been reported yet. Dean Eldridge killed a mountain lion last Friday. The party left Friday afternoon at 5 o'clock for the territory north of the San Francisco peaks. Four hours from the time they left town and 30 minutes after they turned the pack of hounds loose, they had the cat. The dogs treed him in a 75-foot-tall pine tree and pinned him there until the party came.

Eldridge says the eyes of the lion he shot looked as big as saucers.

75 years ago

1947: Breaking all records, travel to Grand Canyon National Park for the travel year, which closed Sept. 30, totaled 611,318, according to a travel report released today by H. C. Bryant, park superintendent. Compared with the 1946 travel year with 488,819 visitors, this shows an increase of 25%. Predictions made at the end of the 1946 travel year were that 1947 travel would at least reach a half million. That figure was reached on Aug. 20 and travel continued high to a new record-breaking total. This tremendous increase, Bryant indicates, is part of the great postwar travel picture, but the total was unanticipated. As a result, even with stays rationed to three days, all available accommodations were filled every night during the peak summer months, and considerable inconvenience to park visitors was inevitable. An analysis of the travel figures shows that Californians again were the most numerous visitors. Arizona again was second. The next three follow in the same order as last year -- Illinois, Texas and Ohio. Vandalism has not been so extensive as a year ago. Probably the meanest visitor this year was the one who stole the emergency telephone from the roadside near Buggein Hill in August.

50 years ago

1972: The 10-year timber management plan for the Coconino National Forest has come under fire from the Coconino Sportsmen. The Sportsmen's organization, in a letter to Don Seaman, local head of the forest, termed the environmental statement “incomplete.” It took issue with the U.S. Forest Service’s plans for the next 10 years, in that they were not specific as to each of the timber sales planned, and that they did not specify the location of the roads to be built or reconstructed. The Forest Service plans 51 miles of new roads and improvements of 87 miles of existing roads. It breaks down over the 10 years at about 5 miles of new roads each year and improvement of 87 miles of present roads. The bulk of the roads to be built and improved are designed to permit the timber industry to get the logs out of the forest. The draft statement notes that temporary logging roads are to be closed once the logging operation in a specific area is concluded. Without roads leading into and out of the forest, self-styled sportsmen will take their four-wheel-drive vehicles and make their own roads. And this is more damaging to the environment than what the Forest Service proposes.

25 years ago

1997: At least two players with stakes in affordable housing are taking a wait-and-see approach to the city council-proposed moderately priced housing program. Helen Hudgens, executive director of the affordable housing coalition, said she was not ready to comment on the program’s impact but at this point she is excited about the chance to explore new affordable housing opportunities in Flagstaff. Council introduced the plan Tuesday after proposing a bare-bone sketch of the ordinance in July. Jean Richmond, executive vice president of the Northern Arizona Home Builders Association, said she wants to make sure any plan that purports to ensure affordable housing is good for all involved. “We're willing to look at any formula that works,” she said. The plan would call for residential developers who build more than 10 housing units to dedicate between 5 and 40% of those units to affordable housing. The plan base is affordable housing needs on the city's median income of about $33,000. Feasibility is what several developers of Flagstaff residential projects said is missing from the proposed plan. City government is in no danger of taking a lazy approach to residential development, judging by Council’s agenda for October. Tentatively scheduled for about mid-October is discussion on traffic downstream impacts, sparked by the February approval of a development in University Heights. Before the end of the month, city council expects to see a consultant’s finding and development impact fees.

All events were taken from issues of the Arizona Daily Sun and its predecessors, the Coconino Weekly Sun and the Coconino Sun.



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