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hiking

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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), but you can also check out the North Rim for desert views and great hiking trips. 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 many free shuttle buses 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 round 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 along the steep trail. 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 about natural history where you can attend ranger talks about the formation of this immense canyon, the history of its first inhabitants, and how the area is still changing today. Bring hiking boots, ample water, sunscreen, a hat, and check for info on backcountry permits.

We hiked this trail in February 2015 and it was the perfect time to have cool and comfortable temperatures. It was in the 60's when we started on the rim and it was 78 when we got to the bottom. The first day, we hiked to Indian Gardens Campground and spent the night in our tent. It is a good campground and has pit toilets and water. Very quiet. The next morning, we hiked down to Phantom Ranch. We spent approx. 2 hours resting there and bought more food to eat at the snack bar. We hiked back up that same evening to Indian Gardens and spent another night there. I would recommend, after my own experience being very challenging, that you spent a night at the Phantom Ranch campground or the cabins down there BEFORE heading back up to Indian Gardens. Then spend a night at Indian Gardens and hike out. Bring plenty of light weight snack food, dehydrated hiker meals and a pocket rocket for warming up your water and adding to your dehydrated meal for a light weight, quick meal. It was very helpful that you could fill your water down in the canyon at several water stations. Also, it was great that they had lots of drinks and snacks to purchase at the Phantom Ranch snack bar. You can also pre order a full meal at Phantom Ranch before your trip, if that is what you prefer. This trip is a trip I will never forget. Don't attempt this hike without proper preparation and when it is too hot.

1 day ago

Amazing views! Great little spots to walk off near the trail and get some great views :)

It was awesome! it's easy going down with gorgeous views, but dont underestimate! Coming up is the hard part. pay close attention to what the park rangers say. the weather is really unpredictable. wear lots of layers, take alot of water, food and salty snacks.

I’ve done the R2R five times and can’t imagine getting tired of it. If you’re thinking of it as a bucket list item, it’s worthy. Don’t skip Ribbon Falls.

Take dinner with you and eat at Plateau Point at sunset. If you’re ever able to be out there during a full moon, you’ll never forget it.

We did this hike in mid-February. The weather at the top of the canyon was not ideal, but as we made our way down the rocky trail, the weather improved. Very quiet and secluded, we only saw two other couples. It took us about an hour to get to Maria Spring, and two hours to get back up (with a couple photo ops and beer breaks along the way). We even got to see a triple rainbow as we hiked back to the top!

This hike is a perfect way to get a good work out and take in spectacular and vast views of the canyon without completely tiring yourself out or eating up your entire day. There was still some ice at the beginning of the trail. Those parts were quite slick, but they were less than 25 ft. I was wearing hiking boots, but my partner did just fine in treaded sneakers.

Has anyone hiked this with kids? Considering taking my 5 year old

I would rate this hike moderate to easy, not hard... but this being said after doing the hike in February where the weather was cool and comfortable. Point Ooh Ahh had great views, best if the sun is behind you. The water sources at the beginning of the trail were not in order, so be sure to pack your own!

5 days ago

Unreal abd surreal. So many just stop at the visitor center lookout and miss so much. Take the short .6 mile hike from the visitor center to the geology museum or take the free buses to each viewpoint if you don't have time. if you have time hike the rim or even venture into the canyon on Bright Angel Trail as far as you are comfortable. this is one place that you are robbing yourself if you don't get out and take the hikes

Did it first with my wife when I was 66. Second time with my two daughters at 68. Spent three nights in the canyon and would do it again. I don’t agree that you have to be in tip top shape but it would help. Take your time, observe and enjoy. It’s not a race and as long as you hike out you WIN!!! That being said you must be careful with the heat and hydration.

10 days ago

One of the few peaceful hikes in the park. First few miles are flat and easy but coming back out is just as difficult as most other trails down into the canyon, especially since the trail isn’t as well maintained. Watch your footing and consider bringing hiking poles.

Also, driving to the gate requires a high clearance vehicle but you can park at the sign that says 1.4 miles to Waldron trail and add another 2.8 miles to your trip.

full of wonder!!

15 days ago

Beautiful views of Grand Canyon, but very crowded.

The last 3 miles are tough!

A beautiful alternative view from the rim. Short hike, a little steep but the view at Ooh Aah Point is so worth it. Have fun!

Went from bright angle, down to the river and phantom ranch, and then went back to south kaibab. We were about to do the trail to plateau point, and started at 9:50 a.m. Changed our mind to do this trail when we arrived at Indian garden. It was about 1 p.m when we went across the bridge. Finally got back to south kaibab at 5 p.m. We were totally exhausted after finished the trail though, the scenery is great.

this is the best hidden gem in the park! an easy forested walk leads to a picnic area, and then if you follow the trail to the viewpoint beyond you are almost instantly rewarded with panoramic views. this is a solitary, quiet place that would be amazing at sunrise or sunset! don’t miss it!

epic and awe inspiring — there is no substitute for experiencing the canyon and its river close up like this. that being said, be realistic about your abilities. have a set turn around point: if you don’t make it to Tip-off Point in around two hours, consider taking the Tonto trail across to Bright Angel. This alternate route saves about 1500 feet of elevation gain, and is still a rewarding hike. If you haven’t made it to Tip-Off in three and a half to four hours or so, the canyon has defeated you and you should consider turning around. My boyfriend and I did the full route — we started at 6:15AM and ended at 4PM. Like a bunch of other reviewers, we are fit(ish) but not ultramarathoners or anything, but we did prepare by hiking several 10-mile 3,000 footers until we got comfortable with the distance. We took the orange rim route shuttle bus from the visitor center to get to the trailhead, but the park also has a “hikers express” that runs from bright angel lodge. I highly recommend talking to a ranger at the backcountry information office before doing this hike! they have awesome maps of the trails and great advice. They are there to help you, even though it is official policy for them to never advise anyone to do this hike. Be sure to bring enough salty snacks and gatorade (we had about 1500 calories each and 1L of gatorade each plus water), and take breaks often. We were so intimidated by this route and by the reviews, but it was an amazing experience that I’m so glad we did!!

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