Description of Trail: The Grand Canyon Rim Hiking Trail stretches from the South Kaibab Trailhead all the way west to Hermits Rest; a distance of approximately thirteen miles. The overall hiking trail elevation is at approximately 6,800 feet and varies by approximately 200 feet over the 13 mile distance. Most of the Rim Trail is paved, however portions of the hiking trail are dirt. The Rim Hiking Trail is well travel and extremely popular for visitors. Between Pipe Creek Vista and the Bright Angel Lodge, a few short sections of the trail have grades that exceed handicap accessibility standards. West of Bright Angel Lodge, the Rim Trail narrows and climbs the Bright Angel Fault to viewpoints along Hermit Road. Between Powell Point and Monument Creek Vista the trail is a three foot wide dirt trail. The section of the Rim Trail between Monument Creek Vista and Hermits Rest is also known as the Hermit Road Greenway Trail.
Further Thoughts: Ashley and I really enjoyed our visit to the Grand Canyon National Park. We spent the long presidents day weekend in February of 2014 at the national park and stayed at the Best Western Premier Grand Canyon Squire Inn in Tusayan, Arizona. Tusayan, Arizona is located just 7 miles south of the Grand Canyon Visitor Center off of Highway 64. We really enjoyed our stay at the Best Western and this is a great option for those of you who cannot get a room within the Grand Canyon Nation Park, or if you are looking to save money on your trip. We would highly recommend the steak house restaurant at the Best Western, as well as the food at the El Tovar Hotel inside Grand Canyon National Park. We ate at both locations and were were extremely happy with our choices.
One of the neat things about the South Rim of the Grand Canyon is that there are free Shuttle Buses which allows you to travel quickly and efficiently throughout the park. During the winter season there are only two bus routs that are open. The blue line takes approximately 50 minutes for each bus to complete the round-trip. The blue line runs through the heart of the south rim and goes between the Grand Canyon Visitor Center, hotels, restaurants, and campgrounds. Buses run every 30 minutes from 6 am to 8 am; they run every 15 minutes from 8 am to 6 pm; and they run every 30 minutes from 6 pm to 9 pm. The orange line runs from Yavapai Point and the Geology Museum to Yaki Point, buses run every 30 minutes from 6 am to 6:30 am; and they run run every 15 minutes from 6:30 am to to one hour after sunset. It take approximately 50 minutes for each bus to complete the route. The red line runs only from March 1 to November 30 and it takes each bus 80 minutes to complete the rout which runs from hermits rest transfer center all the way out to hermits rest. Buses run at similar 15 minute and 30 minute intervals. For a detailed map of the Grand Canyon Bus system make sure to click Here.
One portion of the Grand Canyon Rim Trail is known as the "Trail of Time." The Trail of Time is an interpretive walking timeline trail that focuses on Grand Canyon vistas and rocks to guide visitors to ponder, explore, and understand the magnitude of geologic time and the stories encoded by Grand Canyon rock layers and landscapes which was opened in 2010. The trail of time is located between the Yavapai Geology Museum and Grand Canyon Village. It is a 1.3 mile hike backwards in time detailing the Grand Canyon's entire geologic history. You will start by walking the "Million Year Trail", which transitions from human time scales to geologic ones. The "Million Year Trail" is immediately followed by the main Trail of Time where each meter equals one million years of Grand Canyon's geologic history. This fully accessible hiking trail provides breath taking vistas of Grand Canyon and allows you to ponder and understand the depths of geologic space and time. For more information on the "Trail of Time" make sure to click Here.
Rating: Elevation Gain: 400 ft. (Easy), Distance: 13 miles one way (Strenuous for entire hike, however the trail can be broken up into Easy Segments).
Time to Complete Hike: Varies depending on which segment you hike.
MORE TRAIL WRITE-UPS ON THE GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK
Grand Canyon Rim Trail (This Post)
View Grand Canyon Rim Hiking Trail in a larger map