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Grand Canyon Desert View watchtower to undergo renovations

January 15, 2010 |  2:54 pm

The Desert View watchtower. A snorkel lift was used to complete condition assessments prior to the renovations, and will be used again during the renovations. The Desert View watchtower, a historic and unmistakable architectural feature on the Grand Canyon National Park South Rim since 1932, will be getting some much needed renovations in the upcoming months.

The work is being done to keep the tower structurally sound -- its mortar is deteriorating, threatening the building's integrity.

Slated to begin this month, crews will start restoration by replacing the roof, which will close visitor access to the observation deck.

They will also be pointing the structure's mortar joints, as well as repairing or replacing windows and exterior wood, which may limit access to areas outside.

While this may be a bit of an inconvenience to those visiting the Grand Canyon in the coming months, the iconic landmark will soon be safer for those wanting to enjoy the magnificent views of the canyon and the Painted Desert from its observation deck.

-- Kelly Burgess

Photo: The Desert View watchtower. A snorkel lift was used to complete assessments prior to the renovations. Credit: National Park Service

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