October 9, 2017

Day Trip to The South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park

Imagine living in the Grand Canyon State and not ever visiting the Grand Canyon. That was me and I knew that had to change. When you visit, you truly realize why it is a must see destination. There is a lot to explore and I only had a day so I knew it was important to research and determine before you arrive what area(s) to explore.

We based ourselves out of Flagstaff for this trip, an easy 1.5 hour road trip away from the South Rim. After researching hikes, I knew I wanted to do the South Kaibab Trail and the Bright Angel Trail. I knew we couldn't do both...unless we could?

Who says you have to hike a full hike? We did short parts of both hikes and it was beautiful! As always water and good shoes are a must need for hiking. We were lucky enough to have perfect weather too!

Entering the Grand Canyon South Rim entrance, we were required to pay a fee of $30 or use your America The Beautiful pass (their annual pass).

Your first view of the Grand Canyon is just like you imagined: breathtaking and out of this world. The vastness and grandness of it all is pretty overwhelming. You can’t help but take a ton of photos hoping that one will capture the vastness of it all. But remember not to stand and drool too long, going down below the rim is beautiful too.

Our viewpoint we used was the Pipe Creek Vista. It is the main canyon between Kaibab and Bright Angel. I highly recommend it!
We parked at the South Rim Visitor Center and took the free shuttle to the start of the South Kaibab Trail. (Access to this trailhead is by shuttle only, no personal vehicles allowed). So let's talk about the hikes!

South Kaibab Trail to Ooh Aah Point
1.8 miles RT | 2 hours | 600 feet | Moderate

We hiked down to Ooh Aah Point, which was 1.8 miles round trip. That will land you 600 feet below the rim. The total walking time is about an hour total if you don’t linger, but what’s the point in that! It took us about 2 hours because we stopped frequently to take photos. If you are up to it, you can head farther down into the canyon to Cedar Ridge (3 miles total) or to Skeleton Point (6 miles total). Both require stamina and a lot of water!

After finishing the downhill portion of our hike to Ooh Ahh Point and grabbing some great shots, we headed back up the trail.

Bright Angel Trail
1.8 miles RT | 2 hours | 600 feet | Moderate

Then we went on to the Bright Angel Lodge where the Bright Angel Trail begins to the lower tunnel. It too is a longer trail (steep 12 miles total) It has more switchbacks than South Kaibab, but you may not notice given the tremendous views that this trail offers.

I can't wait to be back soon!
What is your favorite Grand Canyon Hike?

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