Grand Canyon guide pleads guilty

Brian Thompson, age 42 of Cottonwood, Arizona appeared last week in the U.S. District Court of Arizona and pleaded guilty to acting as a guide in the Grand Canyon without a permit. In August, after approximately four weeks of investigation, Grand Canyon National Park rangers arrested Thompson after he received payment to guide a multi-day backpacking trip into the canyon.

Thompson’s arrest came about due to the National Park Service’s routine monitoring of backcountry use and permitting in the park. Thompson violated commercial violating Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 5.3, Engaging in Business without a Permit.

As a resultof his plea, he was ordered to pay a $200 fine and was sentenced to a one year term of probation, during which time he is banned from Grand Canyon National Park, cannot provide tours or guiding services (paid or unpaid) in any national park or national forest, and cannot advertise that he conducts tours or guiding services in national forests or national parks.

The National Park Service is reminding the public that a permit is required in order to offer commercial guiding services in Grand Canyon National Park. To learn more about acquiring a permit, please, the public can visit the park’s web site at

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