Grand Canyon Hiking and Backpacking
Hiking and backpacking in the Grand Canyon are two of the most popular attractions. The canyon’s natural beauty and immense size offers a range of very different hiking experiences depending on your hiking level. There are short paved trails, steep rugged trails, and both long and short trails – whatever it is that you desire to hike you can do it here at the Grand Canyon!
Keep in mind that when you are hiking the Grand Canyon to prepare. Water and food consumption are essential in planning for your hike. You also want to make sure that you have the proper gear, hiking shoes, hiking poles, backpacks are very important when doing the longer hikes. For those of you combining rafting and hiking, Rim to Rim hiking or biking through the Grand Canyon click here for some transportation tips.
Rim Trail Hiking: This paved trail runs along the Grand Canyon Rim for 13 miles. Walk along this trail to explore the views. When you get tired you can find one of the shuttle stops that will take you back to your car!
Bright Angel Trail: Considered one of the park’s premier hiking trails, it is well maintained and has regular drinking water and covered rest-houses. This trail starts at the Bright Angel lodge and descends down to the Colorado River. Many visitors will go to a certain point and then turn around making it a great day hike.
Grandview Trail: More difficult than the Bright Angle Trail this trail is short and step. It leads to an old mining area that has great views! The Grandview Trail leaves the rim at Grandview Point, located about 12 miles east of Grand Canyon Village via the Desert View Drive. 6 miles round trip the average duration is 2-6 hours.
Hermit Trail: Very steep and unmaintained this well-traveled trail makes it way down to the Colorado River. It is 18 miles roundtrip and will take a full day to hike the trail.
South Bass Trail: Suitable for both novice and experienced hikers, South Bass Trail is one of the easiest South Rim hikes to the floor of the canyon. It is a 15 mile hike from trailhead to river.
The South Bass trailhead is located in a remote area about 30 miles northwest of Grand Canyon Village. Primary access via the Kaibab National Forest on Forest Road (FR) 328.
South Kaibab Trail: This trail is known for its panoramic views that are unparalleled to other trails at Grand Canyon. This trail is considered to be the quickest way to get to the bottom, it is 14 miles round trip. Many people will stay at the bottom of the canyon and return on the Bright Angle Trail. The South Kaibab Trail is located near Yaki Point.
Tanner Trail: Note: The furthest east of all the South Rim’s rim-to-river trails, Tanner Trail is ideal for those with experience climbing the canyon Avoid this trail during hot weather, this trail gets especially hot.
This trail can be accessed by Parking at Lipan Point, walk back down the road a few steps, and look for the trailhead east of the pavement.
Want to enjoy a hike with a guide? Try one of these guided hiking tour companies:
Grand Canyon Hiking & Backpacking Companies
At the REI Co-op, we stand behind one simple belief, that a life outdoors is a life well-lived. Experience life outdoors with the REI Co-op on a professionally guided adventure into the Grand Canyon or around the world. At the REI Adventure Center in Scottsdale we offer single-day guided hiking, biking, and river adventures near Phoenix, and performance bike rentals in Scottsdale, Arizona.
P: 866-455-1601 • rei.com/adventures
Specializing in Day Hikes and Multi-Day Treks, Discovery Treks has been in business for over 25 years, and is one of the original guiding companies in the Grand Canyon. We are recommended by third parties, Frommer’s, Fodor’s Travel Guide, and many others. Discovery Treks was named one of the “Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth” by National Geographic Adventure Magazine, and was the only Grand Canyon hiking specialist honored. We do all of the work (set/break camp, prepare meals, etc.) and provide all necessary pro-quality gear, limited transportation, food, permits, and a knowledgeable and experienced guide who is a Wilderness First Responder and follows “Leave No Trace” practices. Customized itineraries are available.
P: 888-256-8731 • discoverytreks.com
Explore Grand Canyon with experts! Fun, informative day hikes and backpacks for all ages.
P: 866-471-4435 • grandcanyon.org/fieldinstitute