Hiking in Grand Canyon National Park
Many people will say you haven’t really “seen” Grand Canyon until you’ve descended below the rim. Whether you’re a seasoned backcountry adventurer or a visitor looking to see the majesty of the canyon from a fresh view point, hiking in Grand Canyon offers incredibly scenic vistas and opportunities for exploration. Sure, you can gaze down into this legendary canyon from the top, and probably snap some neat photos while you’re at it. But imagine the possibilities that exist if you head beyond the rim and tackle one of the legendary Grand Canyon hikes with a guide or on your own. From exploring ancient Native American sites to dipping your toes in the crystalline waters of a waterfall, hiking in Grand Canyon offers an immersion in history and exhilarating adventure. Now is the time to lace up those hiking boots!
Popular Hiking Trails in Grand Canyon
The Rim Trail (South Rim)
Extending 13 miles from Grand Canyon Village to Hermit’s Rest, the Rim Trail is a paved walkway for visitors looking for a spectacular view, without much elevation change.
Bright Angel Trail (South Rim)
Beginning just west of the Bright Angel Lodge, the Bright Angel Trail is a steep 9.7-mile descent into the canyon, ending on the banks of the Colorado River at Phantom Ranch.
South Kaibab Trail (South Rim)
Considered one of the quickest descents down to the river from the rim, the South Kaibab Trail is 7 miles and offers some of the most sweeping views of the canyon along the way.
North Kaibab Trail (North Rim)
As the least-visited maintained trail into the Canyon, the North Kaibab Trail offers a more secluded experience with spectacular vistas and options for shorter side hikes. Extending 14 miles rim-to-river, consider spreading a round-trip hike over multiple days.
Guided Grand Canyon Hikes with OARS
Grand Canyon Rim to River Hiker
Looking to experience as much of the canyon as possible by foot, but with a cozy bed and a hot shower at the end of each day and without the hassle of planning and securing permits yourself? Join us on our lodge-based Rim to River hike in Grand Canyon and explore its depths with our professional and knowledgeable guides.
Grand Canyon Rim to Rim Hiker
Our Rim to Rim Hiker is the ultimate Grand Canyon guided hike. Explore the Canyon’s amazing geologic layers and expansive vistas while hiking down the North Kaibab trail from the North Rim before heading out to the South Rim up the Bright Angel Trail. And a true bonus: you’ll enjoy two comfortably relaxing nights in the heart of Grand Canyon at the famed Phantom Ranch.
Grand Canyon North Rim Explorer
This guided Grand Canyon hiking and paddling adventure is a one-of-a-kind national park experience. Our lodge-based North Rim Explorer begins with a serene day of inflatable kayaking on the Colorado River at Horseshoe Bend near the headwaters of Grand Canyon before heading into the park to explore the canyon’s quieter side, including a challenging hike from the North Rim into the Inner Gorge down the North Kaibab Trail.
Tips & Tricks for Hiking in Grand Canyon
- Do not overestimate your fitness level. Between high altitudes, high temperatures and varied terrain, the canyon offers magnificent, but challenging, hiking conditions.
- Bring lots of water. For every hour of hiking, you should be drinking between ½ – 1 quart of water.
- Eat a snack each time you take a drink of water. This will keep your energy and your spirits high.
- Break in your shoes BEFORE your hiking trip in Grand Canyon. Nothing ruins a wonderful day of exploration like sore and blistered feet.
- Plan your hike ahead of time, and be sure to allocate enough time for the hike out. The National Park Service recommends planning 1/3 of your time for the descent, and 2/3 of your time for the hike out.