Rain washes out roads to AZ monument - CBS 5 - KPHO

Rain washes out roads to AZ monument

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GRAND CANYON-PARASHANT NATIONAL MONUMENT, AZ (AP/CBS5) -

Heavy rains have washed out roads leading to the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument in far northwestern Arizona.

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management is asking visitors to stay away for at least a few days while crews remove debris.

Upper Garden Canyon Road has been washed out and is closed to vehicle traffic. The gate to the Upper Garden Canyon has also been closed to vehicle traffic, but will remain open for pedestrians during the daylight hours.

The Lower and Middle Garden Canyon were not affected and will remain open to vehicle and pedestrian traffic.

The monument isn't closed. But BLM spokeswoman Rachel Tueller said most people won't be able to negotiate the backcountry roads from Mesquite, NV; St. George, UT; and a ghost town on the Arizona Strip.

National Weather Service meteorologist John Adair in Las Vegas said the area received up to two inches of rainfall Tuesday afternoon.

Hikers, campers and off-road enthusiasts are drawn to the monument because it overlooks the Grand Canyon and has a diverse ecosystem, with high deserts to low valleys.

Lightning also has sparked several wildfires in the area this month.

Copyright 2012 CBS 5 (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.  The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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