Boucher Trail is a 17.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Grand Canyon, Arizona that features a river and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking, trail running, and backpacking and is best used from March until October.

DISTANCE
17.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
5,626 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

backpacking

hiking

trail running

river

views

snow

no dogs

Directions from South Entrance Station: Drive northward on South Entrance Drive to the East Rim Drive/West Rim Drive junction. Bear left on to West Rim Drive and follow it 8 miles, through Grand Canyon Village, to Hermits Rest. The West Rim Drive is open to private vehicles from October through March. At all other times a free shuttle takes visitors to Hermits Rest. The Hermit trail leads southwestward from Hermits Rest. Follow it one and a half miles to the Dripping Springs Trail. This will take you to Boucher Trail.

hiking
4 months ago

Somewhere in one of the guidebooks about Grand Canyon an author once referred to Boucher as "a classic Grand Canyon beatdown of a trail." We've gone down Boucher twice (Feb '11 and May '16) and I couldn't agree more. I love that description.

A decent snow storm hit the day before our February trip, which was our first time seeing the trail. Shaded parts of the canyon still had 12-18" of snow, obscuring large portions of trail. There were no footprints to follow, either - we were the first to go down.

It became quite stressful. We simply could not find the crucial break in the wall that you need to get down to the next level of canyon safely (see pic from May '16). It took us at least a solid hour of cold, impatient hunting out on those slippery ledges before we spotted an old piece of iron hammered into the top of the chute.

By the time we reached the beach at Boucher Rapids we were in great spirits. Great beach, by the way! One of our guys was so exhausted upon arrival that he fell asleep immediately after setting up his tent. He never made it fully inside -- he just face-planted into the opening, out cold with his butt in the air. It was hilarious. It took at least 20 minutes before someone noticed his legs sticking out in the sand, which made it even funnier. We nudged him in. He was fine, just had his dinner for breakfast the next day.

So yes, Boucher is a classic Grand Canyon beatdown. We did find it much easier the second time around because there is no real guesswork (and no heavy snowfalls, hopefully). I enjoyed it the first time (minus the stressful part) and really loved it the second time. We got a late start the second time, and found a decent dry camp about halfway down.

Boucher is tough and challenging but the views are fantastic and the trail sees very little foot traffic. You could easily have the entire thing to yourself.

5 months ago

just hiked a little on the Boucher trail, but it was awesome, faint trail and great views

hiking
Monday, April 16, 2012

I mixed up my review of this and Hermit Trail. This was the first trail I ever did in GCNP. It rained and I froze from not being prepared. Something about cotton clothes. This is was the most difficult trail I have ever been on. Lots of boulders to climb down and very little for trail markers. Good thing everything is down!

If you have good map reading/route finding skills this is a very rewarding trip. Physically challenging, remote and haunting in the rain.

backpacking
Sunday, June 25, 2017