Canyon Rim South Trail to Point Sublime is a 6.7 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Yellowstone National Park, WY that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from April until September.
Having hiked the North Rim Trail from Chittenden Bridge to Grand View Point the previous day – including side trips to Brink of the Lower Falls and Red Rock Point (both with rather tiring climbouts) – wife and I decided to start our South Rim hike at the Uncle Tom’s Trail parking lot rather than at Chittenden Bridge. This shortened version still provided plenty of enjoyable hiking and incredible views.
Artist Point was, for us, the ideal location to see and photograph the Lower Falls and those incredibly colorful canyon walls. I choose to believe that the story of Thomas Moran weeping because his palette didn’t contain enough colors to adequately capture the canyon is factual rather than apocryphal.
The trail from Artist Point to Point Sublime is delightful, with lots of amazing views of the canyon and the river below. Because the young man at the information desk at the Canyon Visitor Education Center had told us that the hike from Artist Point on out to Point Sublime wasn’t really worth it, we almost didn’t hike the South Rim Trail beyond Artist Point. Although the views from Point Sublime might not be considered “sublime,” this portion of the trail was probably our favorite. This segment of the South Rim Trail includes several fairly steep inclines, but nothing terribly strenuous. We enjoyed a rest break at Point Sublime (visiting with a nice young couple from Canada) before heading back.
In our opinion, hiking the South Rim Trail is the only way to fully appreciate the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. Although nearly all of the trail is shaded, sunscreen and plenty of water are (as always) a good idea. And always hike with your bear spray!