Grand Canyon National Park

Arizona, United States
 (26 votes, 27 reviews)
Grand Canyon National Park pretty much speaks for itself; anyone who has been there will know this.  For those yet to go, the Grand Canyon will consistently make your jaw drop even for seasoned veterans of the park.  It is no wonder it is one of the country's most popular National Parks.  

With limited time, you can drive along the rim (Most people visit the South Rim, as it is more accessible from many other destinations and has more of the park's highlights).  If you are feeling the need to get some exercise, walk along the Rim Trail as long as you want before turning around or taking one of the man free shuttles back to the lodge or the restaurant overlooking the vast canyon.  

The best way to appreciate the canyon is from the bottom, usually with a trip to the Bright Angel campground along the South Kaibab Trail and the Bright Angel trail.  DO NOT attempt a trip to the bottom and back in 1 day.  Temperatures at the bottom can reach 110 degrees in the middle of the day, many people suffer from dehydration and heat stroke due to the dry climate.  If attempting this (at least 2-day) hike, start very early in the morning to avoid the heat (do not hike between 10 and 2); By starting very early, you also get the added bonus of seeing the sunrise over the canyon walls, which will bring out some of the reddest rock you have ever seen.With more time to spare, there are several Native American reservations with tourist information, as well as several museums and ranger talks about the formation of this immense canyon, the history of its first inhabitants,  and how the area is still changing today.

Trails

Summary
Difficulty
Distance
The Grand Canyon Rim Trail
A flat walk with stunning views of the canyon. Up to 12 miles, mostly paved.
Easy
12.0 mi/
19.3 km
Rainbow Rim Trail - North Rim of the Grand Canyon
This incredibly sweet ride offers great views, ponderosa and aspen forest, all on a sweet single track.
Moderate
36 mi/
58 km
The Grand Canyon: Kaibab to Bright Angel Trail
Experience the Grand Canyon like few others with this unforgettable 2-3 day trip down into the canyon.
Difficult
16.0 mi/
26 km
Bright Angel Trail, Grand Canyon National Park, NaturePods
NaturePods shares the history and natural world of the Grand Canyon in this video guide. More at www.NaturePods.com
Difficult
18.0 mi/
29 km
Hiking the Grand Canyon Rim-to-Rim
Four days across the Grand Canyon you will never forget!
Difficult
23 mi/
37 km
Havasu Falls & Mooney Falls
3 day backpacking trip to Havasu Falls and Mooney Falls on the Supai Indian Reservation near Grand Canyon National Park
Difficult
24 mi/
38 km
Guides
The Grand Canyon Rim Trail
The Grand Canyon Rim Trail
Grand Canyon Village, Arizona, United States
 
Easy: 12.0 miles
A flat walk with stunning views of the canyon. Up to 12 miles, mostly paved.
Hiking the Grand Canyon Rim-to-Rim
Hiking the Grand Canyon Rim-to-Rim
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona, United States
 
Difficult: 23 miles, Multiple days
Four days across the Grand Canyon you will never forget!
Grand Canyon Hiking
Grand Canyon Hiking
Arizona, United States
 
Experience the Grand Canyon like never before along some of the top hiking trails the park has to offer
Havasu Falls & Mooney Falls
Havasu Falls & Mooney Falls
Supai, Arizona, United States
 
Difficult: 24 miles, Multiple days
3 day backpacking trip to Havasu Falls and Mooney Falls on the Supai Indian Reservation near Grand Canyon National Park
The Grand Canyon: Kaibab to Bright Angel Trail
The Grand Canyon: Kaibab to Bright Angel Trail
Grand Canyon Village, Arizona, United States
 
Difficult: 16.0 miles, Multiple days
Experience the Grand Canyon like few others with this unforgettable 2-3 day trip down into the canyon.
Bright Angel Trail, Grand Canyon National Park, NaturePods
Bright Angel Trail, Grand Canyon National Park, NaturePods
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona, United States
Difficult: 18.0 miles, Full day
NaturePods shares the history and natural world of the Grand Canyon in this video guide. More at www.NaturePods.com
Rainbow Rim Trail - North Rim of the Grand Canyon
Rainbow Rim Trail - North Rim of the Grand Canyon
North Rim, Arizona, United States
Moderate: 36 miles, Full day
This incredibly sweet ride offers great views, ponderosa and aspen forest, all on a sweet single track.
Community Trips
Loren is ready (Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States) Photo
Our gear (Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States) Photo
Loren starting to hike down into the canyon (Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States) Photo
The Grand Canyon (Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States) Photo
Kaibab Trail and Bright Angel Trail - Grand Canyon
by chris on Jun 25, 2009
Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States
17.5 miles
Loren and I caught the 4:30 shuttle to start out hike down Kaibab trail to the Bright Angel Campground at the bottom of the Grand Canyon.  A park ranger told us it would stay so hot down in the canyon that we wouldn't even use sleeping bags, and that there weren't any bugs, so we decided to pack VERY light (water, some cliff bars, jerkey and dried fruit, and our sleeping pads)....
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Havasupai
by crj1 on Jun 10, 2010
Supai, Arizona, United States
11.3 miles
Photos and GPS data from my hike to Havasupai, 6/10/10 to 6/12/10.
Morning near Bright Angel Trailhead Photo
Near El Tovar Photo
Some guy Photo
Tree above Bright Angel Canyon Photo
Grand Canyon (South) Rim Trail
by navratil on Dec 31, 2009
Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States
7.0 miles
A nice winter stroll along the Rim Train at the Grand Canyon.A bit of backstory: Before February of 2010 (that's next month), the Grand Canyon Backcountry Info office would hand out permits four months in advance of the month of departure; which is to say, if you wanted a permit for (say) May of 2010, the first day you could apply for it would be January 1st, 2010.  They take applications via...
Trail Head Photo
Start of trail Photo
Steep switchbacks down Photo
Looking back up the trail Photo
South Kaibab to Phantom Ranch back Bright Angel
by AllenRbrts on Jan 11, 2010
Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States
18.0 miles
Two day trip in the winter down the Kaibab South trail, overnight at Phantom Ranch and then back up Bright Angel Trail.Started out around 11:00 am from the trailhead. The upper sections of the trail has several inches of snow and ice. Used the over shoes traction devices, which worked great. Made great progess, getting to Phantom Ranch around 3:30. Had a great dinner at the ranch and the three of us...
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Bright Angel Trail to Plateau Point, Grand Canyon
by philipc on Apr 28, 2010
Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States
12.4 miles
Took more than 7 hrs drive from Death Valley to the Grand Canyon.  Stayed overnight at the Maswik Lodge inside the park.  Resort facility was not bad except we chose not to pick the rooms with air conditioning to save a few dollars.  In late April, we don’t really need it since the temperature at night in the rim was pretty cool.  It was indeed cool when we arrived there at 10:30pm.  It...
Supai Tunnel Photo
Cottonwood Camp Photo
Ribbon Falls Photo
Phantom Ranch Photo
Grand Canyon Rim-to-Rim
by LagunaHiker on Sep 15, 2008
North Rim, Arizona, United States
22 miles
There is a secret to a Grand Canyon rim-to-rim hike: Take four days to do it, even if you can do it in one. I have friends who go South to North in one day, then North to South the next. But how much of the Canyon do they really get to see? How much time can they spend at Ribbon Falls? It's a destination unto itself. Can they spend a couple of...
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South Kaibab Trail, Grand Canyon
by philipc on Sep 14, 2009
Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States
4.9 miles
God’s creation of natural wonders are truly amazing.  Before this trip, the most memorable trips I have ever made was walking on the ocean floor after a few billion tones of seawater flow in and out of the Bay of Fundy during the tide cycle, taking a boat heading towards the fall to feel the downpouring of the vast amount of water from Niagara Falls, viewing of many different colours of Yellowstone...
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South Kaibab Trail, Grand Canyon
by philipc on Apr 29, 2010
Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States
2.9 miles
Before our trip, we knew the Grand Canyon would be kind of cool at the end of April but had never expected snow. To my surprise, when I looked out of the window the 3rd morning in Grand Canyon, it was snowing. The temperature was 0C, strong wind, with tiny hails of snow.  The forecasted snow storm we heard last night during dinner was now here.  At times, snow was heavy and...
Becca on the Tanner Trail Photo
View from the (upper) Tanner Trail Photo
Jeff on Tanner Trail descent Photo
Becca on Tanner Trail descent Photo
Tanner Trail-Escalante Route-Horseshoe Mesa-Grandview Trail, Grand Canyon
by mplsbeatnik on Apr 23, 2009
Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States
35 miles
A Grand Canyon “Route” being “…a known way to get from point A to point B that is a seldom patrolled, never maintained, sometimes difficult to follow, and sometimes dangerous.  Paths are often covered with rockslides and overgrowth.  Route-finding abilities are essential, and water sources are limited, difficult to find, or nonexistent.”    We identified an entry-level route that looked attractive to us, and built an itinerary around it.  The Escalante Route, which has become pretty close to a trail...
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Down and Up the Grand Canyon
by SingleTracks on Nov 30, 2010
17.7 miles
We gave up on finding warm weather by going south as we were already a stones throw from the Mexican border in Tucson.  We decided to head north to southern Utah, CJ's favorite place on earth (if there is a god, then he's a Mormon because he gave them Utah).  But on the way, on a whim, we decided to call and see if we could get a last minute reservation at...

Reviews
pydhalrahi
Must do for hikers!!!!
Visited on Jun 02, 2013

by pydhalrahi on Aug 15, 2013
Oldruff00
On April 30th I hiked down to Phantom Ranch while my wife rode a mule down. I hiked, she rode out on May 1st on the South Kaibab Trail. I choose to hike the opposite direction of the most recommended route because I wanted to get pictures of my wife's ride that you can't get while on the ride. We chose these dates hoping for favorable weather and were blessed with good temps. It was 96 when we arrived at Phantom Ranch, but the temp for the hike out was cooler (about 72 at the rim) with a very nice breeze.

The trails, encounters and experiences were wonderful.

Certainly not an easy hike for a flatlander. I had trained for about a year before doing the hike. Simulating the hike out as best I could.

The staff at Phantom Ranch was great. Meals were great.

Keep in mind that all the logs and rock ledges used for erosion prevention are steps at a decline going in and an incline going out.

The switchbacks are amazing. Particularly the corkscrew on the Bright Angel and from the black bridge to the Tip Off on the South Kaibab.

Visited on Apr 29, 2013

by Oldruff00 on May 23, 2013
Pocket-Rider
We've been to the Grand Canyon by car, plane, and helicopter, this time we came by train from Williams, AZ. It was delightful. Continental breakfast and beverages on the way. Live entertainment,fresh fruit/vegetables/cheese and even a "train robbery" on the return. After arriving at the South Rim, we were treated to a wonderful self-serve cafeteria style lunch before leaving for an eight mile (one way) narrative tour to Hermits Rest. Stopping along the way to enjoy not only the grand vistas, but to hear stories/history of the area.

The park no longer sells disposable bottled water, so bring your own water or favorite beverage. They have souvenir bottles that you can fill while there. Important to stay hydrated. The air is dry and the heat in the summer can be oppressive. Wear comfortable walking/hiking shoes, hat, sunscreen and sunglasses. Don't forget your camera.

Visited on Apr 18, 2013

by Pocket-Rider on Jun 01, 2013
jonhoward1
5 day trek on The Royal Arch Loop. You need 2 to 3 experienced hikers in the group and good map experience. Don't miss Elves' Chasm and Toltec Beach.
Visited on Apr 14, 2013

by jonhoward1 on Jun 17, 2013
DestinationIsolation
If you're going in winter, bring traction devices!
Visited on Dec 23, 2012

by DestinationIsolation on Mar 26, 2013
jstvglass
Fantastic weather for December and the scenery was gorgeous, of course. We hiked the South Kaibab Trail to Skeleton Point and back. It's one of the best South Rim trails because it follows contours rather than canyons, so the panoramic views are amazing.
Visited on Dec 04, 2012

by jstvglass on Dec 09, 2012
ODanione
Nothing else in the world which is more exciting. Did a 3 day hike. Very difficult but it was worth every drop of sweat.
Visited on Sep 24, 2012

by ODanione on Sep 28, 2012
smccharen
Hiked Rim to Rim, it's a wonderful experience for those who are prepared!
Visited on Sep 22, 2012

by smccharen on Oct 29, 2012
cw50must
Havasu Falls is a great Hike. I recommend it everyone.
Visited on Sep 21, 2012

by cw50must on Oct 06, 2012
ehallander
Holy Crap what isn't there to say about The Big Ditch? Right time of year, great weather, excellent facilities, beauty abound.

Not sure what peoples preferences are so I will give my own. I like the Grand Canyon. The hike down is harder (I feel) than the hike out. The hike down (South Rim speaking) is mostly brakes with needed breaks. The climb out is cardio. I am good for the climb out, so if you can handle getting in, you can handle getting out.

I prefer this time of year, as the high temps of the day are very tolerable, and most, if not all, water is running, so you never have to carry huge amounts at any one time.

This was my first visit on the North Side, and I must say, I am impressed, and have it on my list to get to the North Rim. I think the way (for me) to do it is from the South Rim, this time of year (North Rim Access Closed), and hike up to Cottonwood camp for a 2 nights. THen do a day hike to the rim and back again. Would love to be on the North Rim when it is closed, but that is in the future.

Visited on Apr 01, 2012

by ehallander on Apr 28, 2012
ilya_ktsn
Winter is so far the best time to visit Grand Canyon. White snow adds nice color to the red rocks. Hiking out was actually easier than in summer, just be prepared for cold.
Visited on Dec 27, 2011

by ilya_ktsn on Jun 17, 2013
ochrasy
blue sky, snow and great views of Grand Canyon. Great trail from South Rim to Skeleton Point.
Visited on Dec 08, 2011

by ochrasy on Mar 21, 2012
ikom
The one day return hike to Colorando river using the Bright Angel trail is not impossible but indeed difficult, so try it if you have reasonable experience. I would recommend a stay at the camp by the river and then return from another trail to make a circular route.
Visited on Dec 02, 2011

by ikom on Apr 02, 2012
dsmeeth
The North Rim is awesome and considerably less crowded than the South Rim. Even though the dirve is longer to get there, it is well worth the effort!
Visited on Nov 17, 2011

by dsmeeth on Feb 23, 2012
anne3d
Beautiful place though a few recommendations:
go hiking early in the morning or later in the afternoon, if you come in July or August. Bring a hat and don't feed squirrels, they bite!
I took the Bright Angel trail and the 4th turning point Indian Gardens was especially nice, full of green plants, cacti and even a small torrent.

Visited on Aug 17, 2011

by anne3d on Oct 02, 2011
prebenbensen
Grand Canyon is just great! Been there three times. Summer 2011 with my family (you can find a trip) and '85 and '89. I can recommend a hike down the canyon, but be sure to bring a lot of water and be in shape! In '89 I hiked with my parents down Kaibab Trail to Phantom Ranch and up Bright Angel Trail - approx. 16 miles hike, 1 mile descend and 1 mile up again. We started before sunrise and saw the sunrise from below the rim - if you don't hike, be sure to se the colours of the rising or setting sun from the rim!
Visited on Jul 09, 2011

by prebenbensen on Aug 20, 2011
mhsundstrom
A guided trip from the North Rim to Phantom Ranch to the South Rim. Hot, but what a great trip.
Visited on Jun 18, 2011

by mhsundstrom on Jan 30, 2012
poolop
As soon as we saw the first glimpse of the canyon at the top of the south rim, we were amazed! In fact, my grandpa commented saying that that wasn't the real canyon, that was a backdrop! We stayed at a campground (if you have an RV, we recommend that you stay somewhere else besides Grand Canyon Camper Village- we had trouble with registration and check- in, they put us in a different spot than what we were originally in, literally anyone can go in the campground, and it is 25 cents a minute to shower in the bath house) that was right outside the park and took the shuttle. The very first day we took a train to the park and that was quite an experience. The second day we drove and ate at El Tovar (they have great food!). The third and fourth days we took a sunset tour and they were amazing! We recommend taking the normal one and then the desert view. I gave the canyon four stars because everyone that went got tired of seeing the same thing. I agree, but I put on a happy face because we drove almost 5,000 miles round trip.
Visited on Jun 16, 2011

by poolop on Jun 24, 2011
cwgilmore
Mile 217 in the canyon. Hike about 3 miles north to a natural spring
Visited on Apr 17, 2011

by cwgilmore on Jan 15, 2012
Shawnobi
Don't go on the Mule trails
Visited on Oct 31, 2010

by Shawnobi on Apr 28, 2011
smccharen
The Grand Canyon is a fantastic place to hike! Much more beautiful and diverse than most people would imagine, especially if you only view it from the rim.
Visited on Sep 19, 2010

by smccharen on Feb 18, 2011
holo777
Hiking into the canyon was great! Make sure to have flashlights or headlamps, it gets really dark quick.
Visited on Apr 12, 2010

by holo777 on Feb 20, 2011
TheoTrail
Visited on Dec 28, 2009

by TheoTrail on Mar 31, 2014
joost
My visit with my family during Christmas 2009 definitely lived up to my expectations. It was very cold, especially for the kids, but the awesome views and the sunrise we witnessed on Dec 25 over the rim, made this an unforgettable visit.... I can't think of any other place in the world that matches the canyon in terms of sheer size and impressiveness. Next time I hope to be able to hike down the canyon.
Visited on Dec 25, 2009

by joost on Jan 12, 2011
ilya_ktsn
There is a full trip report at http://ilya1725.wordpress.com/2008/12/02/grand-canyon-trip-report/.

Grand Canyon is difficult to miss and Winter is generally the best time (well, maybe the spring also).

Visited on Nov 28, 2008

by ilya_ktsn on Jul 17, 2011
chris
Once you get a glimpse of the canyon for yourself it's quite obvious why everyone comes here. My best experience was during a road trip of some of the popular national parks in the southwest just after college graduation. My friend and I hiked down into the canyon and camped at Bright Angel campground, along a small river. Seeing the canyon from within is something that I'll never forget (and the rainstorm that night after the ranger told us it would NOT rain, and after we followed her advice to not carry down sleeping bags or tents because it was no use).

Other than getting rained on the entire night, hiking down to the canyon floor was one of my favorite experiences.

Visited on Jun 23, 2008

by chris on Nov 18, 2010
phlume
This is by far one of my favorite locations in the US.
Visited on Jun 14, 2001

by phlume on Aug 10, 2013

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What people are saying...

Kaibab, North Rim, Plateau Point, north kaibab, Supai, ribbon falls, South Kaibab, Colorado River, Bright Angel Trail, Rim to Rim, arizona, south rim, havasu falls, Phantom Ranch, grand canyon, Hiking, mooney falls, day hike, Bright Angel, havasupai

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