Trip Itinerary and Details: Winter Rim to Rim to Rim
Shuttle to the South Rim: 1.5-hour drive from Flagstaff
Hiking Mileage: 7.5 miles
Elevation Loss: 4,800 feet
This Grand Canyon backpacking trip begins on the South Kaibab Trail, a deservedly popular hiking trail that offers spectacular views both up and down the Grand Canyon. It’s 7.5 miles of well-maintained hiking to the Bright Angel Campground, our destination and camp for the first night. This camp is one of the most charming in Gran Canyon National Park as it’s situated at the bottom of the Grand Canyon near the Colorado River and adjacent to Bright Angel Creek. Campsites are shaded by tall, spreading cottonwoods, piped drinking water is available, and nearby Phantom Ranch offers a snack bar.
Hiking Mileage: 7.2 miles
Elevation Gain: 1,600 feet
On day two we’ll break camp and hike another 7 miles up to Cottonwood Campground. While hiking we’ll make a detour to a fantastic waterfall - Ribbon Falls. Cottonwood Campground will be our staging point for the next day’s hike to the North Rim.
Hiking Mileage: 13.6 round-trip day hike miles
What's Not Included
|WHERE DO WE MEET?|
Unless we tell you otherwise, you will meet your guide and group at our office in Flagstaff, Arizona (4025 East Huntington, Suite 150) for an orientation meeting at 5:00 PM the evening before the trip begins. Your guide will then pick you up at your hotel the next morning for transport to the trailhead. For Private Grand Canyon Tours your guide will meet you at your hotel in Flagstaff at an agreed upon time.
|MEALS: WHAT TO EXPECT|
All of our hiking and backpacking tours include a diversity of tasty meals packed full of critical carbohydrates, proteins and fats. We carry foods that travel well in the backcountry – rice, pastas, lentils, beans, couscous, packaged meats, nuts, breads, oatmeal, granola, and more.
For optimal taste and energy, we supplement all our meals with spices, herbs, oils, cheeses, butter, sugar, and fruits and vegetables (fresh and dried). In addition, we provide you with with an assortment of trail mix, energy bars, and dried fruits to eat at your own discretion.
We regularly accommodate vegan, vegetarian, kosher and non-gluten diets and will make adjustments for food allergies. These and other special dietary requests may require an additional fee.
|GEAR AND CLOTHING|
What we Provide
We provide all group gear which includes the following:
We ask that you supply a couple of gear items on your hiking tour. These items are three 1-liter waterbottles per person and either a headlamp or flashlight per person. Basic items like sunscreen, bug repellent (where and when applicable), lip balm, and toiletries are also important. All of these items are available online at Wildland Trekking Outfitters.
What Clothes to Bring
Please refer to the trip packet for a recommended clothing list (if you don't have a trip packet yet, please contact us and we'll email you one). All trips require a sturdy pair of hiking shoes or hiking boots (reliable brands include Montrail, Lowa, Merrell, Vasque, and Salomon), rain gear, and non-cotton and cotton clothing layers. A minimum of three pairs of wool or synthetic hiking socks are also required. All of these items are available online at Wildland Trekking Outfitters.
NOTE: See the Grand Canyon Clothing and Gear Page for more detailed information on what clothes and gear to bring on your hiking tour. The trip packet you receive when you contact us will have the most accurate clothing and gear list for the tour you're interested in.
|WEATHER AND SAFETY|
Weather in the Grand Canyon
The weather in the Grand Canyon varies tremendously from the rim to the canyon floor, with as much as a 30 degree Fahrenheit difference. For this reason, the Canyon is truly a year-round hiking destination. To be fully prepared, please follow the recommended clothing list closely (this list comes as part of your trip packet when you register). Read below for average high and low temperatures at the South Rim and the Canyon bottom:
Your safety is our top priority. Our hiking tours are led by professional hiking guides, all of whom are wilderness-certified first responders or EMT's, each with years of guiding and wilderness experience. We've developed comprehensive risk management protocols that our guides adhere to in case of an emergency, and most tours carry a satellite phone. If you have any further questions about safety, please contact us at 1-800-715-4453 (HIKE) for more information.
|GUIDES AND GROUP SIZE|
Your tour will be led by a trained, experienced professional with a solid guiding background, years of personal wilderness and hiking experience, medical certifications, and a passion for leading people into breathtaking landscapes. Check out our About Our Team page for staff bios.
The standard group size on backpacking trips is 5 guests and 1 guide, with a maximum of 10 guests and 2 guides. We often run custom trips for organizations with greater numbers of people and guides. If you have more questions about group size, please give us a call at 800-715-4453 and we'll answer all your questions.
MH Ross Travel Insurance Services
Travel insurance protects the investment you've made in your travel plans, and it protects you while your'e traveling. MH Ross has been in business for nearly 50 years and is one of the most respected companies in the industry. With a choice of plans that covers a broad range of potential circumstances, responsive and reliable service, and affordable rates, they're a great choice. Please read more on our Trip Insurance page.
|HOW TO REGISTER|
To register for a hiking tour or guided backpacking trip, please complete our Request a Reservation form or call us at 800-715-4453. We'll email you a detailed trip packet, and once you're ready to register we'll enable your online account, where you can login to pay your $250 per person deposit and complete your registration profile (check out Terms and Conditions for information on our refund policy). The remaining balance is due 60 days prior to the trip start date. Feel free to call us with any questions!
Please note: it's beneficial to register 5 months or more in advance for Grand Canyon backpacking trips due to the permit system. You can read more on our Grand Canyon Permits page.