Explore the most popular trail running trails in Grand Canyon National Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

The best adventure I’ve ever been on!!! Started at 7:30 am was at north rim by 1 reached bright angel by 7:15 p.m
What a day!
11/17/18 life changing experience

Back to Erin’s comment above, thanks to your and other reviews, I studied the creek crossings via the satellite view option before hiking this trail yesterday and was able to hike thru without problems. Without having done that, yes, easy to lose the trail. The few tiny rock cairns are there but hard to follow. I agree with others that this is a very good GC hike, but be prepared for 11 hours as the Hermit is a bit rocky for comfortable running. Happy it’s off my bucket list. Next time I’ll enjoy this zone of the GC more with a backpack and couple nights in river or trail campgrounds.

Most amazing hike. I am not a “serious hiker,” however I did train for 3 months to do this hike. We did Rim to Rim in one day, from North to South Rim via Bright Angel on October 20. Weather was PERFECT! Chilly in the morning (started a little after 6am in the dark), but warmed up very quickly. We took 30 hikers with us, from 16 years old to 60, but didn’t all stay together. A few things to note:
* It’s actually 23.9 miles. I verified with a Park Ranger.
* Water is available often, but I always kept at least 3 liters on me at all times, and that was during the fall. If you hike in the heat, you will need MUCH more! I would not do this hike in the summer.
* Electrolytes are not optional.
* You need to snack the entire way down the rim. Then stop to eat your packed lunch at Phantom Ranch. You won’t feel like eating much after that (even though you should) so almost all your calories & electrolytes needs to be in the morning. Salty tastes way better than sweet.
* There are NO garbage cans...you will need to pack out every tiny bit of garbage with you.
* I finished in just over 12 hours. It’s doable for the most physically fit in about 8-10 hours. The last of our group finished in 15 1/2 hours with a knee injury.
* The switchbacks on Bright Angel are not as steep as I expected. They are just extremely relentless and never ending. The last 3 miles will take FOREVER.
* Have a head lamp with you.
* Use every bathroom you pass. There are no “hidden areas” to squat behind. No matter where you go, you will be seen!
* This is not a loop, nor an out and back. You will need a driver waiting for you at the Rim you finish on. We met some people who didn’t think that through, and were trying to figure out how to get back to their car on the North Rim, which was about a 4 hour drive away!
* I was terrified to do this hike, but am so glad I did! You will not regret doing it, as long as you are PREPARED! Hike a few times each week, walk a lot, and do the stair stepper as often as possible.

Going down was much easier than climbing up but what the heck? Awesome views

Absolutely amazing hike. We went slow purposefully to stay 1 nite at each of the 3 campgrounds and soak it all in. The views and stars at nite are exceptional. I recommend hiking it in October as the heat isn't brutal. 23.9 miles starting at north rim and using BA trail to reach the south rim. A must do for all serious backpackers. Highly recommended.

hiking
6 days ago

The distance described includes the walking on Ken Patrick Trail to Uncle Jim Trail. The trail travels through a sparse forest with a lot of fallen trees. It isn't that pretty in the fall/winter though you are blessed with solitude. No mules or people. An overlook of the Grand Canyon all to yourself...that part is great (and you can see the North Kaibab Trail that descends into the canyon). I imagine in the summer, the welcome shade and a few wildflowers would make it more appealing, though then you'll be sharing the trail with the masses. For more details: https://etbtravelphotography.com/2018/11/13/grand-canyons-north-rim/

Lovely walk through the trees on a well-worn path to stunning views of the canyon. Be sure to follow the app, as the trail isn’t listed on the maps given out at the Grand Canyon lodges. This makes it less crowded and a great find!

Started at 1300. Way down, too easy. Little slippery at spots but nothing too life threatening. Once we got down and did a 360 lookaround. Took the biggest dump of my life, wayyy off trail fyi. Then the way up started. Not too bad, considering I was in a Jim Beam fueled rage. Not the best trail to do tipsy. A bit more than halfway up I hit the hangover stage and it was absolute murder. It was worse than when I was hit by an ied. Pushed through and made it without completely dying. 10/10 would do again. Breathtaking views

What can be said about this trail that hasn't been said a thousand times already?

The Rim to Rim experience through the Grand Canyon was a physically demanding, refreshingly emotional adventure. If you have the means and the ability, there are few greater short-term backpacking experiences to be found in the US.

My friend and I completed the trail in September of 2018 and both came away from the experience exhausted and inspired. From the cliff face trail at the north rim to the lush and vibrant Phantom Ranch, Indian Garden and the village, this trail allows you to see so much in only a handful of miles.

The detour to the Canyon overlook is a must. The short side trail to the waterfall is also a must. Cracking a beer at Phantom is a must and so is their world famous family-style breakfast.

Only one percent of visitors make it down into the canyon itself and an even smaller percentage actually traverse the entire thing by foot. To be among that group is an honor and a welcome addition to my memories of adventuring.

We hiked rim-river-rim in one day! It was epic, but definitely wouldn’t recommend it for the casual hiker. We arrived to the North Kaibab trailhead about 11:30p, threw out a couple cots in the 27 degree parking lot, and got a few hours sleep. The star gazing was phenomenal, like there were just streams of stars above you! 4am we were up and readied ourselves for the trek. After 20 min warming ourselves in the car, we set out on the trail at about 5am. Made our way to all the awesome checkpoints of the beautiful roaring springs, manzanita ranger station, cottonwood campground, ribbon falls, etc. Made it down to Phantom Ranch at 12p and enjoyed our sled prepared lunch at a picnic table. Everyone along the trail was delightful. Enjoyed a couple hours exploring phantom ranch and the edges of the Colorado, before headed back. Started about 2:30p. Didn’t seem like anyone else was headed our direction, for good reason, long way out and up! Stopped in cottonwood for our again self prepared dinner, chatted with some other experienced folks. Seems like once you camp in the Grand Canyon you can’t help but come back. Saw about a dozen people headed down from the north after sunset. We trudged along the path and climbed out, arriving back to trailhead at 1am. It was epic, sights unreal, and unlike any “quick” hike we’d ever done. Definitely wish we could have spent more time!

Rocky and steep in places, but beautiful views and not crowded! Bring water and sunscreen, very little shade! Fun hike with panaromic views !

Easy trail, almost no one there and absolutely stunning, unobstructed views of the canyon.

walking
14 days ago

Good walking path. Lots of great views. We started at the visitor center and walked to Mohave Point on the red bus route. My Garmin clocked about 6.5 miles. We hopped on the bus there to go back as we were pretty tired and had 1.5 hour drive ahead of us to where we were staying. Easy path. Not difficult. Once you get past the bright angel trailhead, it gets pretty quiet on the trail and you don’t see many people.

An epic journey to celebrate the two year anniversary of my double knee replacement! Two of my kids joined me for this 15 hour adventure which made it even better. I'll definitely do it again, preferrably earlier or later in the season. September is still pretty warm at PR (96F), and broken water lines on the NK added an extra challenge. Best 'audible' we called was to spend more time than planned at Phantom Ranch. Leaving there to head up at 3:00 pm provided welcome shade on the Bright Angel trail. A fabulous inner canyon sunset, mule deer feeding on the trail, and the last 4 miles under the stars were ample rewards for a long day's walk.

backpacking
19 days ago

This was an amazing trip! One day down, two days at Tanner Campground and a day back out. The trail is clear the whole way although a few rock slides near the beginning had us scrambling for several yards. The length from parking lot to river is about 9.6 miles. I see a lot of varying lengths quoted but that was the figure two of us got from very accurate GPS trackers on us. If you plan ahead and avoid the truly hot months, you'll do fine.

We hiked the North Kaibab trail just last week and spent 5 nights in the canyon. I've detailed my entire hike on my blog here!

https://muskytrails.com/trail-logs/north-kaibab-trail-log-grand-canyon-national-park/

Discussing canyon ecology, trout fishing in bright angel creek, and timing hiking between landmarks and campsites in the canyon. A great read if you are preparing for a backcountry hike of the North Kaibab trail yourself.

See you on the trails!

Musky Trails

I did this shuttle run on 26 October. Started a little late due to waiting for the shuttle, so I was off at 0700 (15 mins after sunrise). My intensions were to run/hike the trail in a day, within 12 hours. I carried 1600 calories in fuel and 3.5 ltrs of water. The first downhill was fairly challenging, rocky and steep which limited my ability to run. The shelter at the spring was a pleasant surprise; I signed the book but didn’t take water. The decent to Tonto took 3 hours, longer than I planned and here’s the reason why. This app has the whole run at 21 miles. The park service and my GPS has it at 25.3 miles! This difference is in this beginning section. I got to Monument Creek at 1030. Here’s where I discovered Tonto’s biggest disadvantage. The trail gets lost at the campsites. Here, salt creek, horn creek. The trail is not marked and hard to find. It often decides to go up and down stream beds. Consult your position on this map at these spots. I had consumed a ltr before monument and filled up my nalgene there. It took me 5 hours total to cross the Tonto trail to Bright Angel, running maybe 30% of it. It was likely in the low 80s with little shade. Besides the campers at monument, i saw only 2 other folks. Between monument and bright angel I consumed 2.5 ltrs. Indian Garden was right around the corner and then it took me 2.5 hrs to climb out right after sunset. Total time: 11 hrs. Of the whole trail, the Tonto section was the most challenging. Between the little shade, rough narrow trail, and losing the trail in washes, it was mentally hard as well as physically. It was worth it though. A great day.

hiking
24 days ago

This is, hands down, one of the most magnificent places to watch sunset ... PERIOD. My friend and I did this short little jaunt over to Shoshone Point on 10/14, and it was truly unforgettable!

First off, make sure you know where the trailhead starts (follow the directions on the All Trails app) because there is no sign indicating the beginning of the trail other than a small parking lot leading to a closed-off road. The “hike” itself is just a short mile walk through the trees to the viewpoint. We saw multiple deer grazing on our walk as well, which just added to the majesty of it all.

Upon arriving at the viewpoint, we shared the sunset with just 6 other people, and it was incredible! It was also incredibly cold, as the wind chill brought the temperature to well below freezing (20 degrees). Despite the chill, we found refuge under a small rock ledge and huddled together for warmth as we watched the afterglow of this truly breathtaking event.

I would absolutely return to this spot for another sunset, or perhaps even a sunrise. As previous reviews mentioned, this may be the best kept secret in the whole Grand Canyon!

Doable in a single day - it's practical to go back because of transport. I did it in 10.5 hours. It's smart to leave before sunrise. Think about bringing water, not every water source was open when I went.

Anyway, it's a great hike. Going down the canyon is THE thing to do over there. Hiking on the rim isn't the same - you'll get the full experience of the size of the canyon!

Also, if you have to choose south rim vs north rim...I'd vote for south rim because it's closer to the colorado river. You also have more decent choices (hermit, britgth angel, tanner)

Great hike. Very doable in a single day if you are fit, however think about starting before sunrise - it's not just for the time, but also for the heat. Everytime, I've reached phantom ranch around 10AM, which is smart.

Transport might be complicated, but otherwise go for it! You can do several days, but you need permits for camping.

Going down the canyon is by far the best. The thing is that the north rim is so far, it's hard to reach. That's a good start. Know your limits, but I'd suggest going deeper, it gets much better

Great epic hike. Very VERY doable in a single day - but you have to organize transport, which is annoying. And I'd highly suggest leaving before sunrise.

hiking
27 days ago

Maybe I missed the point?Not very well maintained, not great views.

Amazing. I wasn’t expecting the vegetation, streams, and overall beauty of the canyon. We did it straight though in 13.5 hours, which included our breaks and lunch at Phantom Ranch.

October 16, 2018

11 hours 45 minutes

I did this trail in reverse (Bright Angel to Kaibab). It took about 7 hours. I brought three liters of water and ran out with three miles to go. Not good! I'd bring four next time. You can probably get away with three going the opposite direction because there is a fill up station at the Indian Garden campground before the last uphill push to Bright Angel trailhead. The weather is beautiful in mid-October. The scenery is the most consistently spectacular of any hike I've done. Enjoy!

backpacking
1 month ago

This was our 3rd day on our backpacking trip and assent. We started just above Papago Falls because we lost daylight and didn’t make it to Hance Rapids. It started raining just as we were packing up the tent and continued all day. I would have rated this a nicer hiker if it wasn’t for the weather. The trail was nice and gradual up the creek bed and then an uphill battle. I never felt any of the sections of the trail were dangerous even tho they looked it, it was pretty well marked with cairns. It started snowing heavily as we approached the rim which after being soaked from rain the snow killed our moral and made it difficult and dangerous to see the trail. It seemed like we would never make it to the top and were so happy to see the Trail marker. We parked on the side of the road near the trail head so it wasn’t a far walk out. This is a very difficult uphill do not underestimate the climb or the weather.

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