As an adult, I have been to the Grand Canyon two times (I know that I went as a kid but can’t tell you many details!). The first time was several years ago when I worked for the National Park Service. They had a cool training program where one portion (there were 5 portions) was held in the Grand Canyon. I got to go for almost two weeks and stayed in the Park in the Training Center housing. This trip was in October 2011.
There are many points to visit the Grand Canyon. North Rim, South Rim, West Rim. Today’s post will basically cover the South Rim.
South Rim Specific Maps
Be sure to check the Park’s website for all pertinent information.
On the South Kaibab trail I hiked to Skeleton Point and turned around. They have awesome signs as you hike into the Canyon.
We learned in my training that only 8% of the visitors to the Canyon actually leave the rim! I wasn’t going to be part of the majority and stay up top, and you shouldn’t either!!! We also learned of the many dangers of the canyon and knew to plan our hikes based our capabilities.
I loved these Spring Water stations, you could fill your water bottles! The National Parks are firm believers in the Leave No Trace Movement!
Other cool things in the Village and at the top of the Rim.
The first major structure to be built in the Grand Canyon Village was El Tovar, designed by Charles Whittlesey. The hotel opened in 1905, and was one of the fanciest hotels west of the Mississippi. The clean, comfortable hotel with fine dining and activities was an immediate hit. The hotel features 78 guest rooms, a gift shop, newsstand, dining room, and lounge. The hotel is open to the public and is a great place to relax and step back into life in 1905. The hotel is open year-round. Be sure to have a Prickly Pear Margarita on the porch near sunset, breakfast there is amazing as well!
The Hopi House was designed by architect Mary E.J. Colter and opened in 1905, at the same time El Tovar opened. Mary Colter was one of the first American architects to appreciate the natural beauty of Native American design, she designed Hopi House to resemble a typical adobe pueblo used by the Hopi Indians of Old Oraibi. The Hopi House, a National Historic Landmark, has been offering authentic Native American arts and crafts to visitors for purchase since the Fred Harvey Company opened its doors in 1905.
A visit to Hopi House is both shopping and a museum. Here you will find a large selection of native arts and crafts available for purchase, such as hand-crafted kachinas, Native American jewelry, hand-woven Navajo rugs and authentic Native American pottery. The second-floor gallery, which reopened to the public in 1995, offers a variety of museum-quality items. Hopi House is located next to the EL Tovar on the Grand Canyon South Rim. It is open year-round. Hours vary seasonally.
A group from my training were going to Phantom Ranch! You have to have a permit to do this, and register far in advance. This was an overnight hike! I do think, I would like to do this someday!
You can also ride a donkey down!
The other time that I went to the Canyon as an adult was in October 2015! Russell (Kerry’s better half) had never been and we were in Las Vegas and made a point to take a day trip there. We want to go back sometime and hike into the canyon further than we were able to on this tour.
Please let us help you plan your Fabulous Indeed Vacation to the Grand Canyon! Kerry used to work for the National Park Service and specializes in Fabulous Vacations to the many Parks. Check out this post for more information on the Desert View / East Entrance of the Grand Canyon.
Contact us today!