Unfortunately everything in the Southwest(and really, the entire Park System) is becoming more popular/tougher to secure access to. It's not an issue unique to your secret corner of Arizona or REI. Been vacationing in the Southwest for the last 20+ years and it's crazy how much things have changed/gotten more crowded. 


It's a double edged sword for public lands, more people recreating responsibly and enjoying our natural resources is a great thing but balancing that with sustainable use is hard and going to frustrate people, especially those of us who remember the "before times".