Day-hikes in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
Views on the South Kaibab Trail hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

hikes in Grand Canyon National Park

Region in Arizona, United States
Grand Canyon trail map

The Grand Canyon is one of the most iconic sights in the whole of the United States, a dramatic crease in the desert landscape that surrounds it. This plunging gorge was sculpted by the Colorado River and in some places is over a mile deep, creating a mind-bending landscape that appears to defy nature. A trip to the Grand Canyon is a must for all true adventurers.

Hiking in the Grand Canyon National Park is centered on the canyon itself, but there are many different trails to choose from, suitable for hikers of all levels. From the iconic South Kaibab Trail to the epic Rim-to-Rim hike, there’s plenty here to keep even the most adventurous traveller happy. The rugged trails and jaw-dropping landscapes mean that you’ll be well rewarded for your efforts, and this is a hiking trip likely to remain etched in your memory for years to come.

Hiking in the Grand Canyon National Park is also a wonderful way to learn more about the fascinating geology of the region. The steep canyon walls tell the story of millions of years of the earth’s history, with colorful layers of sedimentary rock that give us fascinating insights into the environmental history of the region. Step back in time millions of years and explore the earliest history of the development of our planet.

This incredible natural wonder is on almost every hiker’s bucket list. To give you a little inspiration for your next hiking adventure, we’ve put together a list of all our favorite hikes, together with some top tips on how to enjoy the canyon. Read on to find out more!

Types Of Hiking In The Grand Canyon National Park

As the name suggests, the Grand Canyon is the destination for some truly epic hikes in an epic landscape – ideal if you’re a keen adventurer looking for a bit of a challenge. Hiking to the bottom of the Grand Canyon is no mean feat, and you’ll certainly need plenty of energy and stamina for the steep climb back up to the top. However, this can be an immensely rewarding experience, whether you choose to do it as a strenuous day hike or camp out for the night on the valley floor.

However, you don’t need to be an experienced hiker to enjoy all that this incredible natural gorge has to offer. There are lots of shorter, easy hikes in the Grand Canyon National Park, allowing you to appreciate the majesty of the landscape without committing to a long, tough canyon hike. Kids will adore the fantastic viewpoints over the iconic landscape, and it’s a great opportunity to learn a little more about the geology and nature that makes this region so beautiful and distinctive.

Easy Hikes In The Grand Canyon National Park

Cape Royal Hike: This short, easy hike will take you along a paved path to one of the best viewpoints in the Grand Canyon National Park. The trail is dotted with fascinating information boards that tell visitors about the geology and biology of the region, but the real draw is the magnificent panorama from Cape Royal itself. You’ll have a view that extends across the canyon all the way to Desert View on the South Rim. This is one of our favorite easy hikes in the Grand Canyon National Park.

Family Hikes In The Grand Canyon National Park

South Rim Trail Hike: The South Rim Trail is the most popular route in the park, and with good reason. This relatively easy hike, passing from Grand Canyon Village with Hermits Rest Point, traces the flat valley bottom, making it an ideal route for hikers of all ages and ability. This is one of our favorite family hikes in the Grand Canyon National Park.

Day Hikes In The Grand Canyon National Park

Bright Angel Trail Hike: Beware – this challenging hike is not for the faint of heart! It’s a strenuous day out, but we think it’s one of the best day hikes in the Grand Canyon National Park. The initial descent offers incredible views over the canyon, and the landscape just keeps getting better and better until you reach the bottom and gaze upon the picturesque steep inner canyon.

Challenging Hikes In The Grand Canyon National Park

South Kaibab Trail Hike: This epic trail is one of the most challenging hikes in the Grand Canyon National Park, and should only be attempted as a day hike if you’re an experienced, fit hiker! However, the rewards make all the effort worthwhile, with views over this incredible, otherworldly landscape. To make this trail a little easier, split it over two days and camp at the Bright Angel Campground.

Best Hikes In The Grand Canyon National Park

Santa Maria Springs Hike: This hike in the western tip of the Grand Canyon passes by some impressive rock formations, as well as offering wonderful views over the canyon edge. The path descends steeply down a series of switchbacks before reaching the flat valley bottom, and the Santa Maria Springs. Although the climb back to the trailhead is steep and arduous, this relatively short hike is a great way to spend a morning in the Grand Canyon National Park.

Cape Final Hike: This short, easy hike is one of the lesser-known routes in the Grand Canyon National Park, meaning that it’s a good option if you want to escape the crowds. You’ll also enjoy a fantastic panorama of the Grand Canyon and the Colorado River. It’s possible to extend this hike into an easy overnight backpacking trip, perfect for families and beginner hikers!

Grandview Trail Hike: The steep descent into the eastern section of the Grand Canyon is a little challenging, but the views along the way are simply spectacular. Your destination is Horseshoe Mesa, a plateau that juts out into the canyon. Make sure to bring plenty of water, as there is little shade in the later stages of the hike, and it can get hot underneath the afternoon sun!

Bright Angel Point Hike: The route to Bright Angel Point is a wonderful short hike for all the family! The views are simply remarkable, with a panorama that extends across the Grand Canyon, the Colorado River, and the North Kaibab and Bright Angel Trails that weave their way down the into the gorge. The path is well maintained but steep, so not suitable for strollers.

Shoshone Point Hike: Hikes in the Grand Canyon National Park can often be crowded, but this short, easy hike is usually much quieter than the other routes listed here. The destination is an incredible viewpoint, where you can gaze out at the remarkable scenery from the viewpoint – a white, jutting rock that hangs over the canyon. This is one of the best places in the Grand Canyon National Park for a picnic!

Dripping Springs Hike: This secluded, shady hike is perfect for a hot day, as you’ll enjoy plenty of shade from the warm sun. The trail passes through a lush valley, and you’ll need to negotiate some tricky places where cacti and plants have invaded the path, making you feel as though you’re on a real adventure. The destination is a picturesque spring, with water dripping from the mossy roof of a stone alcove.

When Is The Best Time To Go Hiking In The Grand Canyon National Park?

Although some parts of the Grand Canyon National Park (such as the South Rim) are open year-round, the main hiking season runs from April to mid-October. Outside this time, the North Rim is subject to snowy conditions and the trails are closed. The summer months of July and August can be extremely warm, making uncomfortable conditions for hiking, and at this time the park can often be saturated with visitors. As a result, we think that the best time to go hiking in the Grand Canyon National Park is spring or autumn. Early spring is ideal as the weather is still cool, wildflowers adorn the trail, and there are fewer crowds in the most popular areas of the park. However, some areas around the North Rim are likely to be closed. In autumn, the fall colors add an extra layer of beauty to this already spectacular landscape.

Other Outdoor Activities In The Grand Canyon National Park

The best way to appreciate the majesty of the Grand Canyon is on foot, but in addition to hiking, there are many other outdoor activities in the Grand Canyon National Park! There are many opportunities for cycling around the park, including guided bike tours. Take advantage of the Colorado River and try your hand at whitewater rafting or smooth water trips on the river. It’s also a wonderful place for camping and backpacking, and there’s no better place to appreciate the beauty of the night sky than on a camping trip in the Grand Canyon National Park!

How To Plan A Trip To The Grand Canyon National Park

If the Grand Canyon National Park is on your bucket list, it’s time to start planning your adventure today! We’ve put together everything you need to know in our guide to planning a trip to the Grand Canyon National Park. In addition to information about when to go and where to stay, we’ve got plenty of ideas for how to spend the perfect day in the Grand Canyon National Park, and of course, our top 10 hikes. We’ve done the hard work to make sure your trip goes perfectly – all you need to do is grab your hiking boots and head out on to the trail!

Frequently-Asked-Questions About The Grand Canyon National Park

How long does it take to hike down the Grand Canyon?
Whichever route you choose, it usually takes around four or five hours to reach the Colorado River and the valley floor. The ascent back to the top typically takes around seven or eight hours, which is why it’s not usually advisable to attempt an out-and-back hike to the canyon floor in one day unless you are very fit. Obtain a backcountry camping permit in advance and split your hike over two days.

Do you need hiking boots for the Grand Canyon?
The trails in the Grand Canyon National Park are typically uneven and therefore it’s advisable to bring sturdy hiking books with appropriate ankle support.

Is the Grand Canyon dangerous?
The vast majority of visitors to the Grand Canyon National Park enjoy their trip in safety and security. However, as with any wilderness area, accidents can happen, and therefore it’s important to take precautions. Water can be scarce on many trails, so make sure to bring plenty of drinking water to ensure you stay hydrated. Fatalities occur each year due to falls at the Grand Canyon, so take care when walking on the steep cliffs.

Are there bears in the Grand Canyon?
Black bears can be found in the conifer forests around the North Rim. However, encounters with humans are very rare.

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The best hikes in Grand Canyon National Park

Views on the South Kaibab Trail hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

01. South Kaibab Trail
Difficulty

15.0mi 4,731ft 8-11.5h

The South Kaibab Trail is one of the hardest hikes in the Grand Canyon National… Read More

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9.7Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty
Bright Angel trail hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

02. Bright Angel Trail
Difficulty

17.7mi 4,357ft 8.5-12h

Completing the Bright Angel Trail in one-day is only for the fittest of all hikers.… Read More

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9.4Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty
Trail of the Dripping Springs hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

03. Dripping Springs
Difficulty

7.0mi 2,306ft 4-5.5h

This less trodden trail leaves from Hermits Rest and bring you to a secluded and… Read More

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9.2Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty
Scenery from the South Rim Trail hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

04. South Rim Trail
Difficulty

8.0mi 427ft 2.5-3.5h

The South Rim trail is easily the most popular hike in the park – it’s… Read More

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9.4Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty
Trail of the hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

05. Shoshone Point Trail
Difficulty

2.2mi 266ft 1h

The Shoshone Point Trail is a fantastic less travelled easy hike to gain some much-needed… Read More

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8.9Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty
Trail of the Bright Angel Point hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

06. Bright Angel Point
Difficulty

1.0mi 289ft 0.5h

This popular trail leads from the North Rim Visitors Centre to the scenic Bright Angel… Read More

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9.4Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty
Scenery from the Grandview Trail hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

07. Grandview Trail
Difficulty

6.4mi 2,720ft 4-6h

The Grandview Trail may not be quite as “epic” as those that hike way down… Read More

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9.1Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty
Scenery from the Cape Final hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

08. Cape Final
Difficulty

4.3mi 630ft 1.5-2.5h

The mostly flat trail leading out to the rim of the stunning Cape Final isn’t… Read More

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8.4Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty
Trail of the Santa Maria Springs hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

09. Santa Maria Springs
Difficulty

4.8mi 2,100ft 3-4.5h

While exploring the far western tip of the Grand Canyon, this hike descends towards a… Read More

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9.4Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty
Scenery from the Cape Royal hike in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

10. Cape Royal
Difficulty

1.0mi 154ft 0.5h

At the end of the harrowing scenic drive, Cape Royal is definitely an impressive reward.… Read More

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9.4Overall Rating Technical Difficulty Physical Difficulty

Yes, there are more than 10

Grand Canyon National Park is so beautiful that we can not give you only 10 hikes. So here is a list of bonus hikes in Grand Canyon National Park that you should take a look at as well

South Kaibab Trail to Cedar Ridge

11. South Kaibab Trail to Cedar Ridge
Difficulty

2.8mi 1,102ft 1.5-2.5h

The South Kaibab Trail to Cedar Ridge is the perfect way to experience the majesty… Read More

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South Kaibab Trail to Ooh Aah Point

12. South Kaibab Trail to Ooh Aah Point
Difficulty

1.8mi 686ft 1-1.5h

The South Kaibab Trail to Ooh Aah Point hike is one of the easiest hikes… Read More

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Indian Garden Campground via Bright Angel Trail

13. Indian Garden Campground via Bright Angel Trail
Difficulty

4.5mi 0ft 1.5-2h

Of all places to camp, the Grand Canyon is a pretty hard one to beat,… Read More

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Plateau Point via Bright Angel Trail

14. Plateau Point via Bright Angel Trail
Difficulty

13.3mi 3,402ft 6.5-9.5h

If you’re ready and able to delve deep into the Grand Canyon, the hike to… Read More

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Three-Mile Resthouse via Bright Angel Trail

15. Three-Mile Resthouse via Bright Angel Trail
Difficulty

6.0mi 2,113ft 3.5-5h

The hike to the Three-Mile Resthouse on Bright Angel Trail is a nice compromise for… Read More

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Yavapai Point via Rim Trail

16. Yavapai Point via Rim Trail
Difficulty

1.6mi 82ft 0.5h

If you want jaw-dropping Grand Canyon views without needing to break a sweat, the hike… Read More

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Hopi Point Hike

17. Hopi Point Hike
Difficulty

3.8mi 384ft 1.5-2h

The hike to Hopi Point on Rim Trail takes you to possibly the most dramatic… Read More

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Hermit Trail

18. Hermit Trail
Difficulty

17.5mi 5,059ft 9-13h

Hermit Trail is a 17.5miout and back hike in the Grand Canyon that… Read More

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Lava Falls Trail

19. Lava Falls Trail
Difficulty

2.6mi 2,503ft 3-4h

Lava Falls Trail is only 2.6mi long, but it just might be the… Read More

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Roaring Springs via North Kaibab Trail

20. Roaring Springs via North Kaibab Trail
Difficulty

11.0mi 3,517ft 6-8.5h

It’s hard to pick the most beautiful day hike in the Grand Canyon, but the… Read More

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Ribbon Falls via North Kaibab Trail

21. Ribbon Falls via North Kaibab Trail
Difficulty

16.8mi 5,381ft 9.5-13h

The North Kaibab Trail is the most thrilling of the three maintained routes in the… Read More

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Skeleton Point via South Kaibab Trail

22. Skeleton Point via South Kaibab Trail
Difficulty

5.8mi 2,028ft 3.5-4.5h

The hike to Skeleton Point via South Kaibab Trail is one of the best ways… Read More

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Grand Canyon Rim Trail

23. Grand Canyon Rim Trail
Difficulty

12.7mi 584ft 4-6h

If you plan to visit the Grand Canyon, you’ll almost certainly find yourself on the… Read More

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Grandview Trail Loop

24. Grandview Trail Loop
Difficulty

12.5mi 3,937ft 7-9.5h

The Grandview Trail Loop is a challenging 12.5mi loop hike off the South… Read More

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Grand Canyon Village to Hermit’s Rest

25. Grand Canyon Village to Hermit’s Rest
Difficulty

17.0mi 1,217ft 6-8h

Hermit’s Rest is the most westerly viewpoint accessible on the Grand Canyon Rim Trail. This… Read More

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Phantom Ranch to Ribbon Falls via North Kaibab Trail

26. Phantom Ranch to Ribbon Falls via North Kaibab Trail
Difficulty

11.9mi 1,946ft 5-7h

The North Kaibab Trail is the most thrilling of the three maintained routes in the… Read More

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Yavapai Geology Museum to Verkamp's Hike

27. Yavapai Geology Museum to Verkamp's Hike
Difficulty

1.5mi 39ft 0.5h

Exploring the South Rim of the Grand Canyon? Take a hike from the Yavapai Geology… Read More

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Uncle Jim Trail

28. Uncle Jim Trail
Difficulty

4.7mi 732ft 2-2.5h

While the trails on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon tend to be more… Read More

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Grandview Point to Horseshoe Mesa Trail

29. Grandview Point to Horseshoe Mesa Trail
Difficulty

5.7mi 2,480ft 3.5-5h

Hiking from Grandview Point to Horseshoe Mesa Trail is a hard 5.7mi out… Read More

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Soap Creek Trail

30. Soap Creek Trail
Difficulty

8.3mi 1,463ft 3.5-5h

The Soap Creek Trail is an 8.3mi out and back hike in Grand… Read More

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Horseshoe Mesa Loop via Grandview Trail

31. Horseshoe Mesa Loop via Grandview Trail
Difficulty

12.2mi 3,875ft 6.5-9.5h

The Horseshoe Mesa Loop via Grandview Trail is a challenging 12.2mi loop hike… Read More

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Maricopa Point, Powell Point, and Hopi Point via Rim Trail

32. Maricopa Point, Powell Point, and Hopi Point via Rim Trail
Difficulty

4.7mi 466ft 1.5-2.5h

If you plan to visit the Grand Canyon, you’ll almost certainly find yourself on the… Read More

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Phantom Ranch via South Kaibab Trail

33. Phantom Ranch via South Kaibab Trail
Difficulty

14.3mi 4,872ft 8-11.5h

The hike to Phantom Ranch via South Kaibab Trail is one of the best ways… Read More

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Vaseys Paradise via South Canyon Trail

34. Vaseys Paradise via South Canyon Trail
Difficulty

5.8mi 2,835ft 4-5.5h

The hike to Vaseys Paradise via South Canyon Trail is an exciting adventure that leads… Read More

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South Kaibab Trail, Tonto Trail, and Bright Angel Trail

35. South Kaibab Trail, Tonto Trail, and Bright Angel Trail
Difficulty

13.2mi 3,458ft 6.5-9.5h

Combining South Kaibab Trail, Tonto Trail, and Bright Angel Trail is one of the best… Read More

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Transept Trail

36. Transept Trail
Difficulty

2.9mi 282ft 1-1.5h

The Transept Trail runs along the North Rim of the Grand Canyon from the North… Read More

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Phantom Overlook via Phantom Ranch

37. Phantom Overlook via Phantom Ranch
Difficulty

2.4mi 676ft 1.5-2h

The hike from Phantom Ranch to Phantom Overlook is a fairly quick trip that won’t… Read More

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Cottonwood Campground via Phantom Ranch

38. Cottonwood Campground via Phantom Ranch
Difficulty

14.4mi 2,369ft 6-8.5h

If you’re down at Phantom Ranch on the floor of the Grand Canyon, use this… Read More

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Cypress Point Vista via North Kaibab Trail

39. Cypress Point Vista via North Kaibab Trail
Difficulty

6.5mi 2,556ft 4-5.5h

The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is a rugged, jaw-dropping hiking destination that mostly… Read More

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New Hance Trail

40. New Hance Trail
Difficulty

13.0mi 4,944ft 8-11h

The New Hance Trail begins from the eastern side of the South Rim of the… Read More

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Cape Final Trail

41. Cape Final Trail
Difficulty

4.0mi 495ft 1.5-2h

The Cape Final Trail is an easy route that takes you through the forest to… Read More

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Ken Patrick Trail South via Point Imperial

42. Ken Patrick Trail South via Point Imperial
Difficulty

9.7mi 1,237ft 4-5.5h

Hiking to Ken Patrick Trail South from Point Imperial gives you two stunning viewpoints to… Read More

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Coconino Overlook via North Kaibab Trail

43. Coconino Overlook via North Kaibab Trail
Difficulty

1.3mi 469ft 1h

The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is a rugged, jaw-dropping hiking destination that mostly… Read More

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Supai Tunnel and Coconino Overlook via North Kaibab Trail

44. Supai Tunnel and Coconino Overlook via North Kaibab Trail
Difficulty

3.7mi 1,398ft 2-3h

The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is a rugged, jaw-dropping hiking destination that mostly… Read More

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Dripping Springs via Hermit Trail

45. Dripping Springs via Hermit Trail
Difficulty

6.0mi 2,136ft 3.5-5h

Dripping Springs is a hidden spring in the red rock of the Grand Canyon, and… Read More

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Hermit's Rest to Powell Point via West Rim Trail

46. Hermit's Rest to Powell Point via West Rim Trail
Difficulty

12.0mi 761ft 4-5.5h

If you plan to visit the Grand Canyon, you’ll almost certainly find yourself on the… Read More

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Hermit’s Rest to Santa Maria Spring

47. Hermit’s Rest to Santa Maria Spring
Difficulty

4.0mi 1,752ft 2.5-3.5h

Santa Maria Springs is a hidden spring in the red rock of the Grand Canyon,… Read More

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Grand Canyon Greenway Trail

48. Grand Canyon Greenway Trail
Difficulty

13.1mi 984ft 4.5-6.5h

The Grand Canyon Greenway Trail is a 13.0mi route that connects the town… Read More

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Colorado River via South Canyon Trail

49. Colorado River via South Canyon Trail
Difficulty

10.8mi 3,255ft 6-8h

The hike to the Colorado River via South Canyon Trail is an exciting adventure that… Read More

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Widforss Trail

50. Widforss Trail
Difficulty

9.1mi 1,037ft 3.5-5h

The Widforss Trail is a 9.0mi route on the North Rim of the… Read More

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Pipe Creek Vista Hike

51. Pipe Creek Vista Hike
Difficulty

3.0mi 128ft 1-1.5h

The hike to Pipe Creek Vista from near the Grand Canyon Village provides an easy… Read More

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Tanner Trail

52. Tanner Trail
Difficulty

16.9mi 5,482ft 9.5-13h

Tanner Trail is a hard 17.0mi hike in the Grand Canyon that goes… Read More

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Cliff Springs Trail

53. Cliff Springs Trail
Difficulty

1.1mi 308ft 0.5-1h

Cliff Springs Trail is a short and sweet hike on the North Rim of the… Read More

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Roosevelt Point Trail

54. Roosevelt Point Trail
Difficulty

0.3mi 3ft 0.5h

Roosevelt Point Trail is a short and sweet hike on the North Rim of the… Read More

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South Bass Trail

55. South Bass Trail
Difficulty

12.2mi 4,367ft 7-10h

The South Bass Trail is a 12.0mi tough hike on the South Rim… Read More

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Grand Canyon Bridle Trail

56. Grand Canyon Bridle Trail
Difficulty

3.2mi 256ft 1-1.5h

The Grand Canyon Bridle Trail is a 3.2mi easy hiking trail on the… Read More

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South Kaibab Trail to Tip Off

57. South Kaibab Trail to Tip Off
Difficulty

8.9mi 3,255ft 5.5-7.5h

The hike on South Kaibab Trail to the Tip Off is one of the best… Read More

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North Rim Fire Watchtower Hike Map

58. North Rim Fire Watchtower Hike
Difficulty

2.8mi 361ft 1-1.5h

Adventure through the forest on the trail to the North Rim Fire Watchtower, a hike… Read More

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Hermit Camp to Monument Creek Camp via Tonto Trail

59. Hermit Camp to Monument Creek Camp via Tonto Trail
Difficulty

6.3mi 1,217ft 3-4h

This guide follows a portion of Tonto Trail from Hermit Camp to Monument Creek Camp.… Read More

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1.5-Mile Resthouse via Bright Angel Trail

60. 1.5-Mile Resthouse via Bright Angel Trail
Difficulty

3.2mi 1,184ft 2-2.5h

The hike to the 1.5-Mile Resthouse on Bright Angel Trail is a nice compromise for… Read More

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Surprise Valley Camp to Deer Creek Falls

61. Surprise Valley Camp to Deer Creek Falls
Difficulty

6.2mi 1,913ft 3.5-4.5h

This route details Surprise Valley Camp to Deer Creek Falls, a hike in the remote… Read More

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Indian Garden Campground via Bright Angel Trail

62. Indian Garden Campground via Bright Angel Trail
Difficulty

4.5mi 0ft 1.5-2h

Of all places to camp, the Grand Canyon is a pretty hard one to beat,… Read More

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Powell Plateau Trail Map

63. Powell Plateau Trail
Difficulty

8.2mi 1,969ft 4-5.5h

Powell Plateau Trail is a hiking trail in the northwestern arm of the Grand Canyon.… Read More

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Waldron Trail

64. Waldron Trail
Difficulty

4.9mi 2,310ft 3.5-4.5h

Waldron Trail is a hiking trail on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon that’s… Read More

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Deer Creek to Colorado River Hike

65. Deer Creek to Colorado River Hike
Difficulty

18.3mi 5,883ft 10-14.5h

The Deer Creek to Colorado River hike is a very challenging 18.0mi hike… Read More

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