Three-Mile Resthouse via Bright Angel Trail

HARD 319 reviews

Three-Mile Resthouse via Bright Angel Trail is a 5.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Grand Canyon, Arizona that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from September until May.

Distance: 5.4 miles Elevation Gain: 2,086 feet Route Type: Out & Back

backpacking

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

no dogs

From Grand Canyon village take the Bright Angel trail down to the resthouse.

Easy on the way down, moderately difficult on the way up, overall not too hard if you’re even slightly prepared. 1.5 miles to first rest house, 1.5 miles to the second.

hiking
28 days ago

Caution: Whiner Alert! I am not fond of trails that go straight up, so after 3 easy miles down, the last 3 miles straight up were punishing, especially in the heat. Of course, I am getting older (55) and heavier (+30 lbs.), and left at a bad time (11:30) and could have turned around sooner, so I suppose it’s my own fault. But this was not a fun trail for me, and in my opinion should not be classified as moderate. Also, while the Grand Canyon was certainly magnificent, the trail provided essentially the same view you could see better from the rim (except the views back up the canyon wall). That’s my take on it, so clearly reasonable minds may differ.

1 month ago

Start early. Great trail.

hiking
1 month ago

Really beautiful view! It was really early when I started so there wasn’t much traffic on the way down. It was pretty strenuous and busy going back up though after 3 mile point (around 8:30). Totally would recommend to more avid hikers but less regular hikers may enjoy it too.

1 month ago

excellent hike into the Grand Canyon. 6 mile round trip is a good taste of the bright angel trail. awesome hike in every possible way

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

Note, my exercise level 1.5 out of 5  and I did it, you can too. The decent was a breeze but be careful there are many lose rocks; the trek back was strenuous (for me) but so worth it. The view is breathtaking, awe-inspiring, words cannot explain it, this alone makes the hike totally worth it. Start early, it can get really hot, bring water and snacks.

hiking
2 months ago

Great trail. Bring loads of water. I’d recommend starting early in the morning as it can get pretty hot on the way back. Enjoy.

hiking
2 months ago

This trail is amazing. Lots of downhill walking and I t takes twice as long to get back up, but the views are amazing so you don’t mind. Walking poles would have been very helpful on this hike. Trail is nicely marked and there is really no way to get off the trail. Cannot wait to go back and get all the way to plateau point.

hiking
2 months ago

Going down this trail was more difficult for me then anything. The decline is hard on the knees. I would recommend knee supports if you have bad knees. However, going up was the real fun! Along the trail, there's rangers offering food, water, and warmth to those in need as it's easy to underprepared for this hike. Brings lots of water and wear lots of layers. It started off cold at the top, scorching hot by the time we got to the bottom, and a thunder and lighting storm as we made our way back!

The trail was amazing! We went upto the 3mile resthouse point. The canyon trails aren't as normal hikes where you climb up first and then descend, so this was a bit tough for us because when you start climbing back up, you're already a bit tired. So we weren't mentally prepared for that. P.S.: There was no water available until this point. Please carry a lot of water!

hiking
2 months ago

We hiked this last week (late April) starting at 9.30 AM. We hiked down to the 3 mile house, the trail was in great condition with small patches of sandy/slippery areas. I would definitely recommend bringing trekking poles for the hike back up. Bring lots of water and snacks. There are plenty of shaded areas to rest on the way back up. Was awesome to hike this in spring, it was the perfect temp (around 70 all day).

Did this late-April, weather was good - not too hot. It was a bit slippery going down, but the views were awesome! We went to the “Ohh Ahh” point and it was incredible. Good place to sit and take in the view. Bring plenty of water and snacks. Took us about 3 hours - we had a 9 yr old and a teen so we took plenty of stops along the way. I’d recommend going down all the way and then taking pictures on your rest stops on the way up. Listen to the park rangers. We wanted to do the 3 mile resthouse but they advised us against it -and they were right. You want to get back up atleast an hour before sunset. We got back up about 20 mins before sunset and the colors were spectacular!

hiking
3 months ago

Great trail with an amazing view the entire time. Steep trail going back up but take as many breaks as you need and you’ll be fine. Mules use this trail so yield to the inside (canyon wall) and give them the right of way. Heavily traffic of this trail going down and up. The earlier you hit the trail the less traffic you will encounter. It’s the Grand Canyon after all so expect it busy every day. Fun watching the mix of hikers some on a short hike and others overnight camping.

hiking
bugs
rocky
3 months ago

we took this 3 1/2 mile hike one way(total 7 miles) 2 days ago and it was beautiful. we went in the beginning of April and the weather was perfect,slightly chilly but a light sweater will do the trick. The hike is simple but full of people coming up and down the hike so be nice and careful. bring plenty of water and some snacks because the hike up will kick your butt. it's a steep hike up towards the top.

3 months ago

Great views with an enjoyable hike. Highly trafficked. Hike as early in the day as possible.

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked yesterday with my husband and our two 14-year-olds. Beautiful day, still a little muddy and icy in a few patches at the top, navigable with good shoes and hiking poles. Stunning views, the return climb was definitely a challenge for the non-teenagers among us but we did it and loved it!

hiking
muddy
snow
4 months ago

Short review: Absolutely beautiful views, well tended trail, must do experience with some precautions. Long Story: We heeded park advice and wore traction and used poles. The first mile from the rim was very snowy and icy in the morning (we started at 9) and some ice remained in the afternoon. The hike down was great although tough on the calf muscles! The hike up was definitely challenging, but we always enjoyed a break to appreciate the canyon views. We went a bit past 3-mile resthouse, approximately 3.5, before turning back. We turned conservatively so we could be back by sunset, although (for us) the hike up didn't end up taking take 2x as long as the hike down. Our hike took approximately 5 hours including breaks - I would guess 2 down and 3 back up. Neither resthouse had water and we polished off 60-80 ounces on a very temperate weather day. An ice cream treat from the Market was the perfect treat.

hiking
5 months ago

I did this hike a week ago. It took us about 3.5 hours to go down and back. Spikes or micro spikes (at least) and poles are a must right now because of snow , ice and mud. We saw quite a few people and their kids without them and they were slipping around. Not smart. People die in the canyon. The temp was 30 degrees and we were in the shadow of the canyon the whole time. So be prepared. A couple came from further down the canyon and told us that it was close to 70 degrees in the sun. I like Kabab trail better but will do this again and make sure to go down to the gardens or out to the Mesa. Stunning views!

hiking
6 months ago

First time to the Grand Canyon and the views were gorgeous! Definitely would recommend microspikes for the trail right now, as it was pretty packed with snow. Took about 3hrs round trip for me to get to the three mile house and back. Stopped quite a few times on the way back up to rest + enjoy the views.

hiking
6 months ago

We did this trail yesterday. A group on their way up said it took them 5 hours to do, which was a little daunting to us at first. The descent down was a breeze. It's quite snowy, and given the snow storm that just came through today, cramp ons were/are highly advised for this. We are mountain hikers, so hiking the descent first was very abnormal to us. It was such a cool experience. The hike back up was incredibly challenging, but it was worth it!

6 months ago

Not as scenic and S.Kaibab but great nonetheless

hiking
6 months ago

Not much of a challenge on this hike other than the constant incline/decline along this distance. Was deterred from going further given all the warning signs on the trail and online. Wish we had went down to Indian Garden, given available sunlight and it was a cold day. The best part of the hike was that it started snowing for the last .5 mile coming out onto the rim. Gorgeous sight.

hiking
7 months ago

I’ve seen nothing else like the Grand Canyon. There was no ‘bad views’ on this trail. The first 1.5 miles down you’re sifting through foot traffic. Going Thanksgiving weekend there were some ice patches. The decent down was almost too easy. Getting back up you definitely feel the altitude. The traffic lessens the further you go and the rest areas had bathrooms if you needed to make a pit stop. Overall, I would recommend! If the right season, I’d go again with a permit to backpack down towards the river. Next time!

hiking
7 months ago

We enjoyed this hike to 3 mile and it was a good workout for our fitness level. We are both 63 and workout regularly,... several younger hikers told us we did well, very pleased we chose this trail.

hiking
7 months ago

Did this over Thanksgiving weekend, so you can imagine the amount of foot traffic there was. Regardless, incredible hike. Made it down to the rest house and it took about an hour to get back up from there. It’ll make you break a sweat, but nothing that’ll cause any crazy huffing and puffing. A couple of short breaks should be enough to get you through it. Lots of families with kids on the trail.

hiking
7 months ago

Hiked in August 2017 in about 3 hours. It took one hour to hike down to the 3-mile rest house, 30 minutes to eat lunch, and 1.5 hours hike up. Highly congested at midday. With more time, we would have loved to hike to the river. Bring lots of water and dress appropriately.

hiking
7 months ago

Great views, but get on the trail early if you want to avoid the hordes of tourists when you hike back at the top. We took about two hours going down stopping for photos along the way and about one hour forty minutes going back up with short breaks (2 women, 40s, in reasonably good shape). Don’t underestimate the climb back up — you will be sweating. Hiked nov 2018, 40-50 degrees, partly cloudy.

hiking
8 months ago

The trail is actually 6 miles, 3 miles down to the 3 mile rest house and back up. The trail was a nice mix of easy areas to moderate areas. The hike was great with awesome views. Lots of people even in mid November.

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