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

Backpacked in 33 lbs. scenery was beautiful nearly all the way down. It got pretty dusty in the air by the village to check in because of the soft sand/dirt. I wish I would have packed something to help with that.

The hike is an established is 23.9 miles. We just did it on Friday.

We did south kaibab up north kaibab in 14 hours. Going down was easy and we got to the Colorado river in under 3 hours. Poles were helpful. Up north kaibab was long and brutal in the 107 degree weather, swimming in ribbon falls was a lifesaver that kept us from overheating. I constantly soaked my clothes in the river and that was a huge help. But oh man, the most beautiful and amazing hike ever.

My favorite place on earth.

Nice hike for family. Great lunch spot at the falls.

Great hike. Friendly people on trail. Spotted a 5 + ft bull snake on trail.

hiking
3 days ago

A nice out and back. Good variety of desert plant life at the beginning of the hike and the petroglyphs at the end are pretty cool. However at the petroglyphs at the top where the "waterfall" would be was just a wet pit infested with bees and wasps that made enjoying the glyphs difficult. It was 94 and I used about 1.5L of water and took about an hour and a half.

Definitely a difficult trail. Do not suggest doing this in one day. We started at 10am weather was perfect and we proceeded down to skeleton point before we committed to doing the full hike. Got down to Phantom ranch and made the choice to go back out Bright angel.

trail running
4 days ago

Very beautiful did a few miles trail running, saw a bear poop and turned back!

After it rains, the waterfall is worth seeing.

The views are beautiful!! However, just because dogs are allowed on the trail, I would not say it is a dog friendly trail. Our 80 pound dog who has hiked with us across the country, needed to be picked up and lowered back down to get over some of the boulders. Her paws became cut and deeply gouged by the riverbed rocks. We felt horrible after bringing her there because she couldn't walk. You may lose cell service just prior to the turn off, leaving GPS useless. The brown wooden sign with yellow lettering is not easily seen from the main roadway, which left us driving past it. Just know, that when you get to the bottom of the Salt River Canyon, you need to turn into what appears to be a parking lot, but is actually the correct road. It is a poorly maintained dirt road down to the trail. A vehicle with some ground clearance may be your best bet. The trail itself is not well marked. It crosses in and out of the river. With all of that said, it is still an absolutely beautiful, remote, hike, and the waterfall at the end is breathtaking!

This is a wonderfully hard and satisfying uphill hike! It is 10 miles total. I’ve never seen horses on this trail nor would it be a good trail for them. 4,200’ of elevation gain.

Incredibly beautiful trail but All Trails messed up big time on this one. Just read Cati Piorkowski’s review from 2017. She explains perfectly. Basically, this is 12.6 miles and *difficult*, not 7.8 miles, nor moderate as stated here. That’s two major errors. Folks are planning trips around the info provided here. This hike takes the better part of the day to complete. We ran out of water and, ending with the western portion of the loop, the incline was so steep and so tough. The fact that it was a June afternoon didn’t help, but I’m young and athletic and my body was just beat after this hike. In the summer, start at dawn and carry at least two liters H2O.

hiking
8 days ago

Did this a week ago and it was great! Easy enough for a beginner to complete without a problem!

Sometimes a little tricky to find your way, but SO beautiful!

attempted to hike this one on 6/2/2018. closed due to extreme fire restrictions.

Still completely dry. Possibly cool if it wasn’t.
Remember to give your car a wash after driving on the dirt road.

Our group, all 14 people completed the SK-Phantom Ranch-BA route safely in mid-May.
We took the 5am bus to South Kaibab Trailhead. Because we parked at the backcountry information center around 4:55 am, and we didn't know the hikers express shuttle actually stops at the information center, we ran the hell out of us to catch the bus there.
So point one, the bus actually stops at the backcountry information center and the visitor center near SK. But giving there might be large groups(we ran into a group of 30-40, if not even more), so starting at Bright Angel Lodge may ensure a seat.
The shuttle actually only takes 20 minutes to get to the trailhead, but since we all need to use the SK trailhead restrooms (There are only 2), so we actually started hiking at 6am.
Hiking down was mostly running for me and my buddy. It took us about 2.5 hrs to reach the bridge. I slipped on a rock and bend my ankle in the middle, but luckily it didn't cause any serious damage.
My water consumption to the Bright Angel Campground was 1.5L, but brought more did give me peace in mind(I had 3L) as the weather really gets hot around 8 or 8:30 and there is no shade on South Kaibab Trail.
We relaxed a bit, refill water, used restroom at Phantom Ranch, they offer iced Lemonade, iced Beer, simple snacks, postcards with "Carried by Mule" stamps(really cool!) and some basic hot weather essentials like buff and cooling cloth, credit cards is OK to be used here.
A lot of hikers hanging out here, squirrels too. There were a lot of signs reminds hikers and visitors don't feed the squirrels, but obviously, a lot of people did before, as the squirrels are not afraid of people at all. My tracking pole felt off ground next to one and touched its fur, and this guy/gal did not care at all. I even saw one robbed one hiker's apple in front all of us while the pool hiker was just turning her head to find something in her backpack.
It was hot down at the river, I didn't check the temperature, but our group member who arrived later said it reached 110F at Phantom Ranch around 11 am.
We took about 1 hr break before my buddy “whipped" me out of the shade and we were on Bright Angel Trail at 10 am.
There was a section after crossing Silver Bridge which was all sandy surface for about half a mile, which made it really hard to walk on, I strongly suggest bring running gaiters to prevent sand and rocks to get into the shoes if you wear low ankle shoes.
It took us about 1 hr to get to Indian Garden, where we took our lunch break for an hour, the thermometer here says it is 95F.
The climb up was actually not as torturing as I expected. The rest spots are optimally arranged(Indian Garden, 3 miles, Mile and Mile Half) to be 1.5 miles apart from each other. For me and my buddies, it's about 1 hr hike from each stop, it paced us perfect so we can re-apply sunscreen, take Salt Stick tablets and eat. Besides the heat, the trail itself is moderately steep, wide, and easy to walk.
In order to achieve everybody's most comfortable hiking experience, we kind of spread out into 5 groups at the end, 1 super fast hiker arrived at 3:25 pm, taking 9 hrs only from the beginning; I and 2 others take exactly 10 hrs. Our last group arrived at 8:30 pm when it started to get cold and rained a bit. But we all made it.

The view of the canyon is stunning, and walking up Bright Angel trail I can see why most people take this route, I saw abundant rock layers, mountain formations, waterfalls, creeks, plants and living creatures. I even doubt I heard a rattle, but that might not be true. We ran into 2 mule groups, one for a guided tour, one seems like just carrying a bunch of stuff. There are trees, bushes, cactus, lizards, flies, squirrels, deer. The canyon view is always at my head turn, each time I stopped to catch my breath, I found myself turning back and looking at it. The unspeakable beauty of mother nature always touches me and always is the motivation for me to hike on.

Do this hike yearly. Never a let down.

Do you pay when you get there or do have to purchase a permit online? And 9 dollars per person or vehicle?

The site is.

https://wmatoutdoor.org

Got the permits online, only had to show the tenant the email/receipt on my phone.

Great hike even in the heat. The afternoon sun shades the canyon.

If you need a permit, call ‭(928) 338-4385‬. If you’re located in Phoenix, Sportsman’s Warehouse sells the permit, (480) 558-1111‬

hiking
11 days ago

Beautiful hike down, and even more wonderful below. Watch out for poison oak my friends!

backpacking
11 days ago

Did the full loop over two days. Would recommend making it a three day, two night hike. The trail was difficult to find at times and so I would only recommend this trail to very experienced hikers. Also, bring your topo map and GPS unit as they will be needed. Did our hike in June and so the water sources were scarce, in fact only eastern portion of Grants Creek and KP Creek had water. Make sure you pack enough. Very beautiful, rugged and primitive hike.

No shade along trail. awesome petroglyphs at the end and a little cave to explore. bring lots of water to drink due to lack of shade.

Hike from the campground to Beaver Falls is my favorite trail ever. Adventurous trail alongside stunning cascading river. Felt like paradise!

Did this trail a yr ago and damn it’s a hard trail but so well worth it,, sad there was no water running like last yr!!

Great trail, but definitely longer than listed. Be sure to have extra water and sunscreen this time of year (June) as there are some long stretches without shade and some steep inclines. Views are stunning.

fun hike for kids and dogs it's easy, we usually hike down to the spring and go swimming there are some pretty big fish the for the area and some petroglyphs and a mine entrance or lock box area with a big explosive sign around the area and ruins. fun family hike and place to hunt not much on views bit nice walking in the canyon

Don’t go here in June. Nothing but flies and wasps. No shade, no flowing water/waterfall. It’s tough to hike on the sand. The sand would probably be great for horses maybe in fall/spring. I’d probably go again in the spring, just because it’s so close by.

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