Grand Canyon boasts beauty and adventure beyond compare. Hiking and backpacking at this world-renowned National Park is the best way to enjoy a fully-immersive experience with your family. Here are three of our favorites, and what we believe to be the three best hiking trips in Grand Canyon for families:
For those enjoy some adventure and are up for a relatively strenuous endeavor, a backpacking trip to Indian Garden Campground is a great start. Located 4.5 miles and 3000 vertical feet down the Bright Angel Trail, Havasupai Gardens is perhaps the most easily accessible campground below the rim. Here you’ll find 13 campsites beneath the shady cottonwoods, toilets, drinking water and a nearby stream. From this basecamp, you can day hike down to the banks of the Colorado River, stroll out to the epic views afforded at Plateau Point, or enjoy exploring along short stretches of the Tonto Trail. This is an excellent introduction to backpacking in Grand Canyon. Backcountry permits are required.
When the summer weather brings scorching temperatures to the bottom of Grand Canyon, the best choice is a rim-based adventure. Explore trails along and just below the South Rim before heading to Marble Canyon, the geographic halfway point between the North and South Rims. Visit historic Lees Ferry, the official beginning of Grand Canyon, and dip your toes in the Colorado River. Then head up to the North Rim for a few days of hiking and camping. At over 8000 feet elevation, the North Rim offers gorgeous summer temperatures, beautiful forests along the rim, and unsurpassed views. There are many great hiking opportunities to choose from, bother below the rim and along the rim.
This is also a perfect trip for families with younger kids or those not looking for something as physically demanding as backpacking down to the canyon’s floor.
For strong and adventurous families with older teens, the Hermit Loop is an amazing backpacking adventure to challenge everyone. Descend from the South Rim via the Bright Angel to its junction with the Tonto Trail before heading west for a few days and finally ascending the Hermit Trail. Your family will experience the more rugged backcountry of Grand Canyon during this 4 or 5-day trek. Passing through numerous tributary canyons, you’ll experience astounding views, splash in quiet streams, witness thundering rapids on the Colorado River, camp beneath unbelievably starry skies, and enjoy a healthy dose of solitude, peace, and quiet within the canyon’s depths. This trip requires excellent strength and stamina and is only appropriate for very fit hikers, preferably with some previous experience.
Plan to carry up to 35 pounds in your backpack each day and hiking for 8 miles or more each day.
There is a trip for everyone with Four Season Guides. If you are looking for a specific type of guided tour, or a custom backpacking adventure for just you and your people, contact Four Season Guides at www.fsguides.com. An experienced guide will answer your questions and help you choose an adventure to best suit for your desires and ability.