Grand Canyon North Rim: It’s A Different World!

Grand Canyon North Rim Lodge porch

OK, so you might have heard a few horror stories about Grand Canyon South Rim: it’s hot and crowded in the summertime… hotels booked to the rafters a year in advance… Mule rides? Forget about it! Not only was the Plateau Point ride discontinued, the daily quota for the Phantom Ranch mule ride was slashed in half, making it even harder to grab a spot on what is perhaps the most coveted visitor experience in the Southwest US.

But there’s a time and place where all these rigid rules about Grand Canyon travel soften around the edges. It occurs between May 15th and October 15th, a short but sweet spell where a Grand Canyon visitor can quietly savor the scent of a cool breeze wafting through tall Ponderosa pines, and listen to the call of a canyon wren echoing from the depths of the gorge. Braver souls can even walk up to the tour desk and be lucky enough to book a Grand Canyon North Rim mule ride, not for next year, no – *gasp* the next day!

This is no alternate reality, friends – this is the Grand Canyon’s cooler, quieter and dare I say prettier North Rim.

This debate – South Rim vs. North Rim – is a very hot topic on travel forums such as TripAdvisor.com at this time of year. Several threads on this subject are active as we speak, but here’s one that’s trending now:

North or South Rim

Now, all that said, here at GrandCanyon.com, 99% of the time, we recommend Grand Canyon South Rim for first time visitors. Here’s why:

1. Grand Canyon South Rim has a larger viewing area of the Grand Canyon. The views are those vast, colorful “iconic” images that you’re most likely expecting to see anyway.
2. Grand Canyon South Rim has more visitor services such as hotels, restaurants, gift shops, etc. To compare: Grand Canyon South Rim has a dozen hotels in the immediate vicinity of the park; the North Rim has three.
3. Grand Canyon North Rim is far less commercialized than the South Rim, which really is the whole point. But if you’re traveling with kids, particularly teens, they may find the North Rim to be a little too laid-back. The South Rim and its facilities have the activities and amenities that appeal to today’s families. Want a Grand Canyon air tour? They’re at the South Rim. Hotels with continental breakfast, in-room wi-fi, pools, etc? South Rim again.

Now, if you couldn’t care less about any of those things and are more into hiking, photography, or just kicking back and enjoying nature, by all means, go to the North Rim! After all, there’s no such thing as an “ugly” side of the Grand Canyon. Or maybe you’ve already been to the South Rim and are ready for something different. Go North. But the key to a fulfilling visit to Grand Canyon North Rim is to plan ahead, well ahead. The Grand Canyon Lodge, the sole in-park hotel, is typically booked a year in advance. Out-of-park properties, such as the Kaibab Lodge and Jacob Lake Inn, also book several months in advance. Gateway cities are somewhat far away. There’s Kanab, Utah, about 90 minutes from the park; Page-Lake Powell Arizona, roughly 2.5 hours from the park (and also deserving of a couple days of your time – more on that later), and St. George Utah, about 3 hours from Grand Canyon North Rim.

Here are a couple of videos you might watch too:
1. Grand Canyon North Rim Lodging, including in-park and out-of-park:
2. Trips to the Grand Canyon Rims: South, North and West:

Have a “grand” day friends! Talk to you later,

Alley Keosheyan

59 Responses

  1. how far from las vegas?
    Actually, I will be driving from O.C. county California to Las Vegas, .and then grand canyon.

    1. It is about a 5 hour drive from Las Vegas to the North Rim and there is a section of the road through the Virgin River Gorge that is under construction so allow a little more time for that.

  2. Hi. Trying to organise a trip from. New Zealand. 20 of us , all fit keen and capable trail runners. We are thinking to helicopter to your lodge. Stay one night. Run from north rim to south rim. Stay one night south rim, go rafting next day. Impinge for May 2017. What do you think?
    Mick Tarry

    1. Mick,

      Unfortunately, it is not possible to take Helicopter to the North Rim Lodge.

      You must use the Trans-Canyon Shuttle from the South Rim to get to the North Rim:

      Just a word of caution about Trail Running the Grand Canyon…since you are coming from New Zealand…Grand Canyon can be much more daunting than you think. You’re coming from a more humid, temperate environment. Grand Canyon is very dry and the elevations are more challenging than one originally estimates. (I know…I happen to hike in it constantly.) Just letting you know that Climatization might prove more of a barrier than you are aware of. With that said, there is nothing more exhilirating than going from Rim to Rim in the Grand Canyon in my opinion.

      The Rafting that I would recommend to you is the One Day Whitewater as you are adventure seekers:

      Enjoy your visit to the Grand Canyon,


  3. Hi Alley, it’s possible to visit the North Rim after the 15 October (actually at the 19. to 20.October) or is the road closed or something else??? What would you recommend to stay? Thanx Thomas

    1. Thomas,

      The road to the North Rim remains open until it is closed by snow or until December 1st. Here is some information about where you might possibly stay, “North Rim Campground sites for the 2016 season may be booked through Recreation.gov. Reservations for Lodging and Camping are strongly recommended. North Rim Campground sites may be booked through October 31. The campground remains open 2 weeks longer than the Lodge which closes on October 15.” (from NPS.gov) You will also be able to find lodging in Kanab, UT.

  4. Hi,

    me and my partner are visiting Las vegas in September,

    we want to visit both the north and south rim; i was thinking of driving to the south rim, have a few hours there then driving to the north rim. i have booked in at the north rim lodge for that evening to then drive back to Las vegas the following day.

    Is this doable?



    1. Jessica,

      It is a 4 1/2 hour drive from Las Vegas to the South Rim…minimum…that means No Stops and No Traffic Congestion. You will be tempted to stop and take pictures of Hoover Dam on the way.

      Then it’s another 4 hours to the North Rim…minimum…again, No Stops…fortunately, there will be much less Traffic Congestion from the South Rim to the North Rim as it is more remote. You will be tempted to stop and walk across Marble Canyon Bridge and then stop at Jacob Lake Inn on the way.

      So, to answer your question directly: Yes, it is doable…but realize that’s 8 1/2 hours of driving with No Stops. Also, I would recommend you pack your own drinks and lunch/snacks to minimize the need to stop along the way, as well.

      Let’s see…also you are talking about September…so the days are getting shorter, so I would get going pre-sunrise from Las Vegas to the South Rim.

      Here are the Sunrise/Sunset tables at the Grand Canyon:

      I hope this helps,


  5. Hi,
    I’m planning a trip for 4 in september, we want to camp 2 nights in a wilderness area, I was thinking North Rim because it will be cooler, and since I already have been to the south rim, I’d like to visit the north rim.
    How long does it take to drive from Orange County to the North rim and how long to the south rim?

    1. Carolina,

      Here’s a Google Map from Orange County to the North Rim that shows an 8 hour 20 minute 529 Mile drive : https://goo.gl/maps/1Tri7bXXoeu

      You can camp in the Kaibab National Forest when you arrive before entering Grand Canyon National Park. Make sure you check in at the National Forest Service office at Jacob Lake Inn. Here’s more info: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recmain/kaibab/recreation

      Once inside the Park, you will need reservations at the North Rim Campground: https://www.nps.gov/grca/planyourvisit/cg-nr.htm

      I like the North Rim for it’s Wilderness aspects too.

      Oh, I need to let you know that the Fuller Fire has closed portions of the North Rim both in the Park and in the Forest. https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/kaibab/alerts-notices/?aid=35221

      So, it’s important that you get the latest information from the National Forest Service before planning your Wilderness Camping there. https://www.fs.usda.gov/recmain/kaibab/recreation



  6. There are seven of us coming to the North Rim on September 2nd. We are staying in Kanab the night of the first and driving to Pheonix the night of the 2nd. In other words, we will have roughly 10 hours to spend in the North Rim. What would you do if you only had 10 hours. We are an “active” family who likes hiking, but we’re open to any and all suggestions. What would you do in the North Rim if you only had about 10 hours?

    1. Ken,

      After arriving at the North Rim Entrance gate, I would recommend the following:

      First, I would recommend you go out to Point Imperial and enjoy that view. This is about 1 hour. If you are up for more spectacular views, then go down to Cape Royal. Watch your time though…it’s easy to keep stopping and enjoying the Grand Canyon. This will add another 2-3 hours before you get to the North Kaibab Trail parking.

      Second, I would hike down the North Kaibab Trail to the Supai Tunnel. It’s about 2 miles down and 2 miles back up. Now, it should only take you just under 1 hour going down, but it will take 1 1/2 or more coming out. If you are looking for a shorter hike, just go as far as the Coconino Overlook that is about 3/4 mile down the Trail. So this is 3 hours minimum too. Why do the North Kaibab Trail? To get you INTO the Grand Canyon.

      Third, go to the North Rim Lodge and hike down to Bright Angel Point. The most popular and one of the best viewpoints from the North Rim. While visiting the Lodge, make sure you rub the statue of Brighty’s nose, the little burro made infamous by Marguerite Henry’s book “Brighty of the Grand Canyon”. If it’s dinner time…which it will be close to…I would call and book a reservation for Dinner at: (928) 638-2611.

      That’s a pretty full day at the North Rim…and easily 10 hours of activities by the time you enjoy the viewpoints.



  7. We are a family of 5 travelling to las vegas. At the last minute we decided to do a day trip to the north rim. We chose the north even though its our first time because we also want to stop by zion park. I was planning on leaving vegas at 5am, short hiking in zion then head to the north rim around noon. We will have about 2hrs or so to look around then head back to the airport. I know thats not ideal but we are short on time and we are more of a “enjoy the scene and take pictures” type than hiking.
    1. Are we trying to do too much? Should we choose just one instead of both?
    2. Since we would have only about 2 hrs, where do you recommend to go in the north rim? Where it would take the least amount of time to get to for a great view?

    1. Hi Amy,

      Thank you for your question. That is putting a lot in one day! Although it might be done under ideal circumstances, there are things to consider such as traffic (slow moving) and road construction. You really should just choose one or the other and not try to do both in one day. It will likely be very stressful trying to stick that tight of a schedule. If you decide to do both anyway, just drive directly to the North Rim Lodge parking lot and walk out along the trail to Bright Angel Point to take your pictures (after you leave Zion National Park.) Take a few from the patio at the Lodge and then leave for Las Vegas. You won’t have time to drive to Point Imperial or out the Cape Royal Road.

      At Zion you could take the short hike to weeping rock but keep in mind that you will need to ride the shuttles to get there and parking in Zion National Park where the shuttles pick you up is generally packed. I really don’t like to suggest this but you might consider just driving the road that goes through the tunnel and stopping at a couple of the view areas on the way. Traffic goes very slowly on that road most days but you get some awesome views of Zion Canyon. If you go to Weeping Rock or another short hike in Zion then go back the way you came to LeVerkin, UT and then drive to Hurricane and head for Fredonia and the North Rim.

  8. We are driving from the south rim to the north rim on Sept 28. What should we stop and do on the drive up?

    1. Hello Dot,

      Thanks for your question. When driving from the South Rim to the North Rim if you have time you can drive a little out of your way to visit Horseshoe Bend. If you don’t have that much time just plan to visit the Colorado River at Navajo Bridge and Lee’s Ferry. Enjoy the views of the Kaibab Forest and the meadows along the way. Watch for wildlife. The trees should be turning colors by the end of September – a beautiful time to be at the North Rim.

  9. We will be staying for 2 nights…what else should we do while we are there…4 retired school teachers, moderately active.

    1. Hello Dot,

      There are many things you can do while you are there. There are some easy hikes you can take or you can even take some harder hikes if you desire. You can drive to Point Imperial or along the Cape Royal Road to Angel’s Window. You should spend an evening sitting on the Lodge patio and watching the sun set. Be sure to dress warmly – the canyon breezes will likely be cool to cold. There is a short hike you can take to get some awesome pictures. From the Lodge take the trail to Bright Angel Point. There are some gorgeous views along the way. This is another great place to get sunset or sunrise views of the Canyon.

  10. I’m trying to plan a trip for 5 of us to begin at the grand canyon Starting Feb 24th (flying in, hotel, car), then travel to Las Vegas for a wedding on March 4th 2017. I would like to see South Rim and North Rim during that week, then travel to vegas and stay two nights and fly out Sun. What airport is best, which should I start at North or South?

  11. Christine,

    The North Rim does NOT open until May 15th Annually.

    So, you ONLY choice is to visit the South Rim and Grand Canyon West during February and March.

    Generally, Las Vegas is the best Airport due to Flight Fares. However, if you fly into Phoenix, go to the South Rim then Grand Canyon West and the Skywalk is on your way to Las Vegas. Phoenix to Grand Canyon South Rim is 3 1/2 hours and you can go through beautiful Sedona. Grand Canyon to Las Vegas is 4 1/2 hours.

    I hope this helps.

    Thank You,


  12. We are planning to visit the North Rim in May, 2017. We will be traveling in our 31′ Class C motorhome. Is there anywhere we can “camp” with this size vehicle near the North Rim? We don’t need any kind of hook ups, just a place to park with some nearby bath rooms.

  13. Hi. My wife and I are planning on visiting the north rim via a RV. We would like to mountain bike Rainbow Rim. What are the chances of a c class RV making it to Locust point?

    1. Steve,

      I would definitely make sure you check with the Forest Service before taking your C Class RV to Locust Point. Kaibab National Forest – (928) 643-7298
      Kaibab Plateau Visitor Center
      Hwy. 67 and 89A
      Jacob Lake, AZ 86022

      I haven’t been to Locust Point personally. I’ve been to Jump Up and the Bill Hall Trail head down to Thunder River multiple times and they aren’t too far away from Locust Point. However, roads vary WIDELY on the North Rim or Kaibab National Forest. Especially, now that they are working on returning several/many of them to wilderness.

      I hope this helps you as you plan your Rainbow Trail mountain biking experience,


  14. How far is it to phantom ranch once you get to the bottom on the north rim? Then how far is it from phantom ranch to the bright angel trailhead on the south rim?

    1. Ellen,

      It is 14 miles from the North Kaibab Trailhead on the North Rim down to Phantom Ranch and the Bright Angel Campground for HIkers.

      Here are some milestones on the way to Phantom Ranch-Bright Angel Campground:
      North Kaibab trailhead to Supai Tunnel 1.7 mi ( 2.5 km)
      Supai Tunnel to Roaring Springs 3.0 mi (4.8 km)
      Roaring Springs to Manzanita Rest Area 0.7 mi (1.1 km)
      Manzanita Rest Area to Cottonwood Campground 1.4 mi (2.3 km)
      North Kaibab trailhead to Cottonwood Campground 6.8 mi (10.9 km)
      Cottonwood Campground to Ribbon Falls 1.6 mi (2.6 km)
      Cottonwood Campground to Bright Angel Campground 7.2 mi (11.6 km)
      North Kaibab trailhead to Bright Angel Campground 14 mi (22.5 km)

      Source: https://www.nps.gov/grca/planyourvisit/upload/North_Kaibab_Trail.pdf

      It is 9.5 miles from Phantom Ranch and the Bright Angel Campground up the Bright Angel Trail to the Bright Angel Trailhead on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

      Here are some milestones on the way to the Bright Angel Trailhead:
      Bright Angel Campground/Phantom Ranch to Rim 9.5 mi (15.3 km)
      Bright Angel Campground to River Resthouse 1.5 mi (2.4 km)
      River Resthouse to Indian Garden 3.2 mi (5.2 km)
      Indian Garden to Three-Mile Resthouse 1.7 mi (2.7 km)
      Three-Mile Resthouse to Mile-and-a-Half 1.5 mi (2.4 km)
      Mile-and-a-Half Resthouse to Rim 1.6 mi (2.6 km)

      Source: https://www.nps.gov/grca/planyourvisit/upload/Bright_Angel_Trail.pdf

      Thank You,


  15. We are currently planning a trip to the Grand Canyon arriving on April 2nd thur April 5th. Because we’re driving cross country, we will actually only have 2 1/2 days to experience the Canyon. We understand that the North rim is probably closed at that time, so any suggestions on must see and do’s around south/west rims would be appreciated. We are a small family with a child who will be 12 at the time of visit. Thanks.

    1. Michael,

      Yes, the North Rim is closed USUALLY from December 1st to May 15th each year.

      So, what are the Must See’s and Do’s at the South Rim and West Rim:

      South Rim – is a Must See & Do if this is your First time to the Grand Canyon:
      * Mather Point is the quintessential point to visit by the Grand Canyon Visitor Center
      * Yavapai Point focuses on the Geology of the Grand Canyon
      * Grand Canyon Village visiting the Gift Shops and Studio’s on the Canyon Edge – Kolb Studio, Lookout Studio, Bright Angel Lodge, The El Tovar, The Hopi House, and Verkamp’s…also the Bright Angel Trailhead. This is the heart of Grand Canyon Village.

      West Rim –
      * Main must see is the Skywalk
      * I like visiting Guano Point because of the direct view into the Canyon and the Sheer Drops!

      Early April can be a great time to visit the Grand Canyon. Springtime is in the air. The nights are still cool and the days can warm up quite nicely. Still be prepared for that Springtime Snow storm though.



  16. We would like to make a reservation for the Grand Canyon North Rim Lodge in July 2018. Do you know how many months in advance we can make a reservation? I thought it was 16 months ahead, but I can’t find that information anymore.

    1. Edwin,

      Forever Resorts now operates the North Rim Lodge.

      July 2018 Room Inventory will open at 7:00am Arizona Time on April 11, 2017 –

      Season Dates: May 15th – October 15th.

      2017 Lodging Reservations: Full season is now open! To begin your reservation, enter your stay date range & click “CHECK AVAILABILITY”, available rooms will show in the area below.

      2018 Lodging Reservations: ENTIRE SEASON opens for booking at 7:00AM Arizona Time on Tuesday, April 11th of 2017.

      Thank You,


      1. We are also visiting the North Rim July 2018 with our kids ages 14 and 11. We have booked he 12:30 half day ride on the mules but now I am wondering if the 7:30am might be better? Wearing pants on a mule in July with possible 110 degree heat might make our kiddos grouchy.

        Is there shade along the trail?

        Looking forward to visiting your part of the world!!

  17. We have the option of North Rim as first time visit to Grand Canyon from Kanab for a full day(with the drive back and forth) or South Rim from Williams. Not bring interested in crowds of people or tourist shops and attractions, just want to spend time with the canyon, is the North Rim not a great option for our family of five with childrem 4, 11 and 17?

    1. Matt,

      Yes, the North Rim is beautiful. You have the Point Imperial, Cape Royal road with great viewpoints and then at the North Rim Lodge with the walk down to Bright Angel Point.

      That will consume a day at the North Rim when coming/going from Kanab, Utah.



  18. We are traveling from Zion to the north rim of the Grand Canyon the week of Thanksgiving. We have a pick up truck and 25 foot trailer (with a good heater). It looks like we cannot make reservations in the park at the north rim. Do you have any recommendations for camping in this area and what might the temperature be at this time of year? Thank you!

    1. Kathleen,

      Please have an alternative plan in case the North Rim has been closed due to snow by Thanksgiving.

      Here is what the National Park Service publishes for this time of the year:
      Winter visits to the North Rim :
      Between October 15 and October 31 the lodge and restaurants are closed, but the North Rim Campground remains open with limited services.
      Between November 1st and December 1st, the North Rim is open for “dawn to dusk” day use with limited services. However, if snow closes highway 67 before December 1, the park will also close.

      Thank You,


  19. Good morning !
    We are traveling from Hawaii in early October to visit Utah for our first visit to Utah’s National Parks and
    the Grand Canyon North Rim. We are very excited!

    We have booked 2 nights at the North Rim Lodge. Inquiring if taking the 1/2 day morning mule ride to
    Supai Tunnel is a worth our time…….We have never ridden mules

    1. Tom,

      The answer you’re going to get from Karlyn Bunting is always enjoy as much as you can.

      Now with that said, make sure all the riders fit the qualifications required to ride the mules. Currently, that is either a weight limit of 200 or 225 lbs on the North Rim Mules. I say that…uh, because I weigh more than that and am Disqualified. You will be sore afterwards if you’ve never ridden the mules. I have friends who’ve told me about their experiences and they love it…however, they were sore afterwards.

      Now, if you do decide not to ride the Mules…and are up for some hiking. I would recommend the hike down to the Supai Tunnel at a minimum. It is 2 miles each way…and, yes, One Step down takes TWO STEPS to get OUT! Always remember that as the Grand Canyon sucks you in… Also, make sure you go through the Supai Tunnel and look at the view into the Grand Canyon on the other side.

      You also need to leave time to drive out to Imperial Point and Cape Royal…both well worth the time!

      Enjoy the North Rim…I happen to love it,


  20. Hello,
    We are planning to fly to Las Vegas then travel by car to visit the Grand Canyon along with other places like Bryce canyon, Zion, Antelope and Horseshoe Bend. We are first timer so we have been doing some research but generally a little confused with the locations. Can you please help with our questions?
    1. Should we visit the North Rim then go to other places because it’s convenient driving? Or since we are first timer, we should visit South Rim then drive to other places, is that still doable?
    2. How is the weather, temperature mid June?
    3. Traveling with 2 kids ages 12 and 7, are any of the hiking trail doable for a those typical age kids?
    4. Do we need to hike to be able to reach famous North Rim view points listed in this website?
    5. Since we want to visit multiple national parks, is there a one time ticket that we can purchase for all of them?
    Thank you so much.

    1. Mel,

      You’re asking a question I’ll try to answer simply, so you can make some good decisions. You’re coming to all the places I love…that’s why I’m saying that.

      Well, let’s start with a Map:

      Except Google is afraid to go through the Tunnel out of Zion on Highway 9 to Mt. Carmel Junction. I don’t know what’s up with that. I couldn’t get it to go that way.

      1. When leaving Las Vegas, Zion is the Closest…and since Antelope, Horseshoe, and North Rim are on your list, it’s best to jump up and get Bryce next before coming back to Antelope Canyon, Horseshoe Bend in Page, then North Rim.
      2. Mid June…Vegas, Zion and Page will be pretty warm. Okay, maybe Hot. That’s when Vegas typically hits triple digits and Zion will too. Bryce, and North Rim are up at 7-8,000 feet so they’ll be enjoyable during the day. Cool at night…40’s or 30’s even.
      3. Oh…don’t get me started on hiking trails. Here we go:
      * In Zion, do the Emerald Pools hike across from the Zion Lodge. Short
      * Do the Weeping Rock hike up the Canyon a bit.
      Angels landing gets too much attention and is strenuous if you are not avid hikers..it’s an ascent…and will be VERY CROWDED. And has a 2,500 drop from the viewpoint for some adrenaline you might need. Be Careful!
      Some people like to hike up the Narrows a ways to get a sense of the beauty of the Slot Canyon part of Zion with the Virgin River in it…the Narrows. (They closed it for 3 days in the entire history of the Park last September…YES, the 3 days I HAD A PERMIT TO GO the Full Length of the Narrows!!! Oh, here comes Bunting, let’s shut it down. And I’m probably related to the Bullock Family who shut their Private Property down so Hikers couldn’t go into the Narrows too…LIFE!)
      * Do the Overlook Trail after coming out of the Tunnel on your way to Bryce…great view back down on the Switchbacks you drive up to the 1.1 mile tunnel.

      In Bryce, the Navajo Loop from Sunset Point…I won’t say anymore. It’s fun. Again, this is up at 8,000 feet, so you will be huffing and puffing. About 1 1/2 mile loop. There’s many more trails in Bryce, this is the popular one.

      In Page, both Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend (1 mile 1/2 round trip) are hikes. We have a Hiking Trail around the Mesa here in Page too that is 10 miles long. Make sure you go to the Overlook just off of Highway 89 before coming down to cross the Glen Canyon Dam. Also, go to the Dam Overlook down by Denny’s.

      And, the North Rim, well…go out to Bright Angel Point in front of the North Rim Lodge first. Yes, that’s where everyone else will be going too.
      * Some people like to hike 2 miles down the North Kaibab Trail to the Supai Tunnel. Remember it’s Grand Canyon Hiking…it will suck you in…for every step down, it’s two steps out. So 4 miles round trip.
      * The Uncle Jim Trail goes right out of the same North Kaibab Trail parking lot. Get some directions, however, it’s well maintained…you do need to make a right turn and not stay on the Ken Patrick Trail which ends up over at Point Imperial…uh, 10 miles later. I think it’s like 3 miles round trip.
      * There’s the Widforss Trail that I really like too. 5 miles each way for a total of 10 round trip. Get some directions when you get there.
      * If you take a day or half day to go out to Point Imperial and Cape Royal, as you get closer to Cape Royal there’s the Cape Final 2 mile trail out to the Rim that gives you a great view into the Eastern portion of Grand Canyon.
      Here’s a link to the North Rim Maps:https://www.nps.gov/grca/learn/news/upload/nr-pocket-map.pdf

      4. Do you need to be able to Hike to reach these viewpoints. Most of them are within 1/4 mile of your vehicle. So, I guess it’s a matter of whether you consider that a hike or not. I, personally, do not, however, I don’t really consider it a hike until it’s 5 miles either…

      5. Yes, get the InterAgency Annual Pass for $80 at ANY of the National Parks you’ve listed. I just renewed mine in December.

      I hope this helps. Please come and enjoy. June is both Hot at the lower Altitudes and very comfortable at the higher Altitudes, cool at night though. So, you’ll get a mix of temperatures.



  21. We are driving from northern California what is the best way to get to north rim and Hoover dam? We would like to drive our own car my husband is handicapped and in a wheelchair. Is this something he will be able to do. Also how far apart is Hoover dam from North rim?

    1. Cheryl,

      Yes, you can experience both Hoover Dam and the North Rim in a Wheelchair. The North Rim will be a bit more difficult, however, some views are doable.

      Hoover Dam Wheelchair Accessibility:

      And here is a link to the North Rim Accessibility Guide:

      Here is a Map from Sacramento, California to Hoover Dam, then on to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon:

      You will see that Google Maps is saying it’s 297 miles from Hoover Dam to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon:

      I hope this helps you enjoy a Grand Canyon and Hoover Dam vacation!

      Take Care,


  22. Hi,
    We were able to book a 2 night stay on the north rim early August. We also wanted to camp at the south rim. My phone map shows 7 hours and 45 minutes between the south and north rim, but I keep seeing other sites say it takes less time. How long would you expect it to take to drive?

  23. Hello Karlyn,
    We’d like to do the South rim first and then Antelope Canyon. Is it possible to get to Antelope Canyon without the gruelling, winding mountain roads (which make me ill)? We don’t need to go to the North rim.

    1. Steve,

      You can go to the South Rim off of I-40 from Williams, Arizona…that is the most direct, non-windy road route to the South Rim. However, the quickest way on Highway 64 to Page, Arizona is via the winding mountain roads…SO I would recommend you go back down Highway 64 to Williams, take I-40 to Flagstaff where you will get on Highway 89 to Page, Arizona. That is the most non-Winding Road route, however, it will take you about 1-2 hours longer.



  24. Great description. I have been to South Rim several times for photography, but never North Rim. One grammatical note to the authors (it’s a pet peeve of mine). You start the last paragraph by saying, “Now, if you could care less…”, which is the opposite of what you mean. The correct expression is if you COULDN’T care less.

  25. Hello,
    My daughter and I are planning a camping trip. We are trying to decide on EITHER staying at North Rim Grand Canyon campground 4 days with our main goals: riding the donkeys,exploring, and a one day trip to Zion OR staying at Zion for 4 days camping and ride over to the North rim for one day riding the donkeys and exploring. We will be coming from a week of exploring Yellowstone and Grand Tetons. After north rim/Zion we plan on going to South rim. What is your advice?

    1. Katie,

      That’s a great plan you have.

      Here are the Donkey/Mule Rides at the North Rim:

      Depending on when you plan to visit…especially with COVID recovery still in motion with its unknowns…I’d probably stay with Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, Zion and North Rim.

      Normally, I would encourage you to do it all…but I don’t know when you are planning to visit. If it’s late in 2021, then do it all.

      Also normally, I would recommend you spend a night in Page, Arizona and experience Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon (but I don’t know when Antelope will Re-Open), so…

      Anyways, come enjoy,


  26. Thank you for all the great information!!! Since many must visit spots near Page, AZ are still closed due to COVID and it is uncertain when they will open….I am thinking about substituting a night or two at the North Rim instead of Page (or as a Page back up). We currently also plan to stay 2 nights at the South Rim. How many nights do you recommend at each Rim? Or will we get bored seeing both Rims on the same trip? Thanks for your help!

    1. Angela,

      Hopefully, you are visiting after May 21st…so that the East Entrance Gate from Grand Canyon will be “possibly” open. As that adds about 2 hours to go down through Flagstaff before going to the North Rim.

      Horseshoe Bend in Page, Arizona is Open, by the way. Yes, Antelope Canyon still remains Closed..and we don’t have a Re-Open Date at this time.

      Read more here about the “possible” East Entrance Opening on May 21st-

      I’m interpreting from the Same Trip meaning you can revisit this area…so, yes, I would recommend you add something different to your visit. If it’s the ONLY time in life you are coming to the Grand Canyon..then Yes, do both. If you’ll be back, then I recommend you break them up into different trips.

      Come and Enjoy,


  27. Our family is planning a trip to the Kanab area this month and want to plan around the crowds as much as possible. Will the North Rim be crowded on a Saturday or Sunday in June, (Father’s Day maybe)?

    Also, is the parking lot for Horseshoe Bend likely to be full on Friday?


    1. Terry,

      The North Rim wasn’t too bad when I was there a couple of weeks ago, however, on Father’s Day Weekend you should expect it to be busier.

      No worries on the parking lot at Horseshoe Bend…it’s is busier, however, has not peaked at Full since 2019 now. (I know…I live here and spoke to Management Yesterday.)

      So, come enjoy…the North Rim is the place to be this weekend with the heat wave…Page is supposed to 106 right now.



  28. Hi karlyn my wife and I will be at the North Rim on October 12 what kind of weather can we expect and what kind of wildlife will we see

    1. Bill,

      Normally, the weather is very beautiful, yet crisp that time of the year.

      The Average daytime temperatures are 59 degrees with nighttime temperatures dropping down to 31 degrees.

      I have seen Turkey’s, Deer, and Buffalo that time of the year. And, of course, the possibility of the Kaibab Squirel too!
      Learn more here on them: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kaibab_squirrel



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