Grand Canyon Journals

Into the Earth

Best of IgoUgo

An April 2001 trip to Grand Canyon by Stella

David Nash Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona More Photos
Quote: Hiking the Grand Canyon with The World Outdoors is an experience I will never forget.

Into the Earth

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Cacti and flowers Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
Hiking with The World Outdoors was the best way for me, a beginner hiker, to fully experience the canyon. Every flower you see suddenly has a story behind it and every rock, a challenge.

Quick Tips:

Be sure to train before any kind of adventure or active vacation. Just increasing your workout time or resistence should prepare you for the trails.

Best Way To Get Around:

Between the lodges and the main trails are free shuttle buses. These are a smart option for hikers and sightseers of all levels.

Once at the trailhead, hike as far down as you are prepared to go or, for children and inactive adults, enjoy the views from the railed lookouts.

Yavapai Lodge/Grand Canyon National Park Lodges

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Hotel | "Yavapai Lodge East"

Yavapai Lodge/Grand Canyon National Park Lodges Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
The Yavapai Lodge is the largest in the Grand Canyon and a good choice if you are planning to stay for longer than a few days or do not have the equipment to camp. Take the Village Loop shuttle bus to Yavapai or The General Store (a great resource for last minute shopping). You’ll be dropped off in front of the main lodge, which houses the reception desk, cafeteria and gift shop. The spacious rooms at Yavapai are very comfortable and clean. After a hike in the Grand Canyon you’ll either feel grateful for a hot shower and a soft bed or saddened to suddenly feel so separated from the nature around you… One thing to keep in mind if you do like to take those hot showers- water conservatio...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 3, 2001

Yavapai Lodge/Grand Canyon National Park Lodges
1/2 mile From the Rim
Grand Canyon, Arizona 86023
(303) 297-2757

The Havasupai Lodge

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Hotel

Quote:
The Havasupai Lodge is located at the end of the Havasupai village, against the red rocks of the western Canyon. It is a log cabin with a barbecue and picnic tables to sit around while you enjoy a dish of grilled chicken or a star-filled sky. With local children and dogs running up to you, you’ll feel more than welcomed. The rooms at Havasupai Lodge are simple; there are two double beds, a mirror, desk, and two roses placed in a plastic cup of water. I slept more comfortably the two nights I was there than during any other night at the Canyon. The sheets were so soft and the pillows had just the right amount of fluff in them. You will also find the only local crafts and souvenirs ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 3, 2001

The Havasupai Lodge

Grand Canyon, Arizona

Days Inn I-40 Flagstaff

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Hotel | "Days Inn I-40"

Quote:
I arrived at the Days Inn at two in the morning with no toothbrush and no pajamas. My toiletries, along with all the hiking gear I bought for this trip, were packed in my luggage. And that luggage was sitting somewhere in America West Airlines’ baggage claim center. Or maybe it was on a plane from Las Vegas to Phoenix. Could’a been stuck on the runway. You wouldn’t know since they have no computerized tracking system! Yes, a major airline’s only way of knowing where your bags are is by communicating with "Johnny downstairs" via a walkie-talkie that sometimes works, sometimes doesn’t. You hear the word "over" too many times without a response and it gets to ya. It kind of rem...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 2, 2001

Days Inn I-40 Flagstaff
2735 S Woodlands Village Blvd
Flagstaff, Arizona 86001
(928) 779-1575

The Crown Railroad Cafe

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Restaurant

The Crown Railroad Cafe Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
Ask a Flagstaff local where to go for breakfast and they’ll point you to The Crown Railroad Café. Luckily, it’s just across the street from the Inn I-40. Home of Flagstaff’s famous 66 omelettes and largest operating electric train display, The Crown Railroad Café is a kick back to the times when Route 66 saw a lot more trains, traffic and travelers. Open the door and you’ll be greeted by crayon drawings of flowers and mountains by local children next to a professional mural of a charging diesel train. Take a booth along the wall, where a miniature scale electric train toots above your head past a general store and saloon painted on the wall, open your menu and get ready for a hear...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 2, 2001

The Crown Railroad Cafe
2700 South Woddlands Village Boulevard
Grand Canyon, Arizona
774-6775

El Tovar Dining Room

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Restaurant | "The El Tovar Dining Room"

El Tovar Dining Room Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
The El Tovar Dining Room, part of the El Tovar Hotel built in 1905, offers the best dining experience in the Grand Canyon. Its log cabin architecture, stuffed moose, deer and elk heads on the wall and hanging kerosene lanterns give this space a rustic air that compliments the surrounding South Rim area. When you walk in, the right side of the dining room is closest to the Canyon. Request a table here if you want to watch the sunset during dinner. For appetizers, try the jalapeno fritters. The perfect amount of cream cheese is slipped into the fritter to provide some relief from the hot, yet irresistible, treat. A typical entrée features rainbow trout, wild rice, a selection of bok choi, car...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 2, 2001

El Tovar Dining Room
El Tovar Lodge
Grand Canyon, Arizona 86023
(928) 638-2631

Havasupai Dining

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Restaurant

Havasupai Dining Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
There is one place to eat in the Havasupai Reservation and its best to get there as early as you can- for both breakfast and dinner- as supplies tend to run short and closing time never lags off schedule. With that said, this is a great place to get a feel for the local culture. Although the Havasupai have their own Community Center, the restaurant offers visitors the opportunity to interact with some of them. There is also a mural on the opposite side of the counter that expresses many of the beliefs of the Havasupai (see Mural entry) just in case no one is in the mood for talking. The cafeteria-style dining offers mostly Southwestern and Mexican specialties with a few local dishes, like Ind...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 2, 2001

Havasupai Dining
Havasupai Reservation
Grand Canyon, Arizona
None

The World Outdoors Picnics

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Restaurant

The World Outdoors Picnics Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
Although there were many dining options to choose from throughout our visit to the Grand Canyon, our favorite meals by far were the ones prepared for us by The World Outdoors guides. Each day, while we hiked with just a water bottle, camera and sunscreen, our guides carried all of the ingredients necessary for a tasty and healthy lunch in their oversized backpacks- without a word of complaint. Once we arrived at our designated lunch spot, Dave and Stephanie lay a green picnic blanket down and got busy slicing and dicing! Each day’s fare was different but always energy-boosting, innovative, fresh and delicious. I’m not allowed to give any recipes away- they’re in such hot demand that...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 2, 2001

The World Outdoors Picnics
Anywhere, anytime
Grand Canyon, Arizona

Rim Trail

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Attraction | "The Rim Trail"

Rim Trail Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
The Rim Trail is not so much a trail as it is a paved pathway offering introductory views of the canyon from behind the security of an iron railing. This "trail" is best for children and adults who are not physically prepared for strenuous hikes into the canyon. The shuttle buses that provide transportation to the starting points of the many trails stop at various lookouts along The Rim Trail. From Hermit Road, you can visit Powell Point, a memorial to the civil war veteran John Wesley Powell and a view of one of the remaining mines in the canyon, Orphan Mine. After a dinner including taco soup and rainbow trout at the Arizona Steakhouse, you can walk back to Yavapai Lodge along some parts ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 11, 2001

Rim Trail
From Yavapai Point to Hermits Rest
Grand Canyon, Arizona 86023
+1 928 638 7888

Hermit Trail

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Attraction | "Hermit's Trail"

Hermit Trail Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
It was best that we hiked Hermit’s Trail on the first day of our trip. It made everything else feel like a breeze. Hermit’s Trail is a 17-mile round trip trail from the canyon rim to the Colorado River, beginning at Hermit's Rest. It is rocky, steep, slippery and if you choose the 1.5 mile trail variation to Dripping Springs, you’ll be clinging to narrow dirt paths along the edge of the cliff with a drop of 4,000 feet to your right and nothing to grab onto on your left. Hermit’s Trail was carved by Louis Boucher, a miner who lived in the South Rim of the canyon for over 20 years. I imagine him exploring these ridges on his own, crawling at times to discover Dripping Springs, where w...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 11, 2001

Hermit Trail
Trailhead near Hermit's Rest
Grand Canyon, Arizona 86023
+1 928 638 7888

South Kaibab Trail

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Attraction

South Kaibab Trail Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
The South Kaibab Trail is the most populated of all the trails in the South Rim- and rightfully so. Following the ridge lines of the canyon, it drops 5,000 feet in just 6 miles. After about seven switchbacks from the rim, the trail extends on a moderate incline. Halfway down a staircase of red sand and hiking boot-prints you’ll come to Ooh-Aah Point, a collection of boulders sticking off the edge of the trail. From atop these rocks, you’ll look straight into the heart of the canyon. A day hike to Cedar Ridge, a plateau 1,400 feet from the trailhead with exceptional views of The Bright Angel Trail and surrounding red and beige rock, is a great option if you want a taste of what this trai...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 11, 2001

South Kaibab Trail
E. Rim Drive
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona 86023

Havasu Canyon

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Attraction

Havasu Canyon Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
After a series of switchbacks camouflaged under the rim of Havasu Canyon, you’ll find yourself on the canyon floor, surrounded by rising rock and an insistent heat. Each step into the canyon is one away from the world above. Sand, rock, flowers and animals replace society, technology, culture- even thought. Nothing but you and nature exists in this canyon, and the anticipation of meeting the people who live somewhere within it, the Havasupai. Once immersed in Havasu Canyon, the views are incredible. This is the Grand Canyon you’ve seen pictures of, heard stories about, dreamed you’d see one day. The colors of the rock, red, orange, rust, brown, and pink, contrast against a cobalt blue sky. ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 16, 2001

Havasu Canyon
Havasupai Reservation
Grand Canyon, Arizona

Wild Flowers

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Story/Tip

The Agave Cactus Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
"For myself, I hold no preference among flowers as long as they are wild, free, spontaneous." Edward Abbey There is a poster in an Aveda store that asks, "What miracle bloomed in the desert?" Below are the photos of three "flowers so rare you’ve probably never smelled them before." In the middle of the purple sand verbena and the Joshua tree, there is a photo of the dune primrose, a white wildflower with four heart-shaped petals and a deep yellow center. All new fragrances for purchase… When hiking the Grand Canyon in late April or May, you’re likely to meet a rainbow of red Indian paintbrush, pink prickly pear blooms and orange globe mallows. You’ll step ov...Read More

Tell Me A Story

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Story/Tip

Listening to stories while eating lunch  Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
Introduction When you pay your entrance fee into the Grand Canyon National Park, don’t forget to get your free copy of The Grand Canyon Guide. This newspaper highlights seasonal events, new regulations or happenings and serves as a basic guide to the major sights and trails. Another excellent magazine was provided by the Yavasupai Lodge and is called The Grand Canyon Magazine (the names just keep getting more creative). This publication included a comprehensive guide to all the trails, hotels and restaurants and provided an in-depth history of the canyon and the people who inhabited it. Chapter One Dripping Springs After an adrenaline-rushin...Read More

If Your Luggage Gets

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Story/Tip

Sheila! Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
Packing Essentials

The World Outdoors will mail you a longer packing list before departure day. Here’s everything you need if you like to pack light. Or if your luggage gets stolen, lost, stuck on a flight to Seattle…

One-two pairs of shorts
One pair of lightweight pants
Two t-shirts
One sweater
Socks and undies
Hiking boots or sneakers if you’re really fit
Sunscreen
Toothbrush and paste (your hotel will have soap and shampoo)
Water bottle
Moleskin
Camera and film
Backpack

And that’s all you really need. The rest is just icing on the cake.

The World Outdoors Guides

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Story/Tip

Dave taking a photo Photo, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Quote:
Half of the trip to the Grand Canyon was being in the company of The World Outdoors guides and the rest of the group. Although I would have liked to explore and hike the canyon on my own, I wouldn’t have learned as much about the geology, botany or history of the area. And I wouldn’t have made as many friends! Our group of about 10 had the full attention of two knowledgeable, enthusiastic and patient guides: David and Stephanie. From the first to the last moments of the trip, they had a smile on their face and a helping hand to lend. They each knew so much about each flower, tree, bird and rock. They prepared amazing picnic lunches for us, and didn’t make us feel bad at all if we wanted- or ...Read More

Havasupai Reservation

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Story/Tip

Quote:
In the bottom of the western Grand Canyon is a Native American community of one hundred Havasupai, or "People of the Blue-Green Waters." My expectations of what an Indian Reservation would be like were met with the realization that the lives of the Indians are a complete mystery to me. The Havasupai are descendants of a hunter-gather tribe, the Cerbat, who inhabited the canyon in the 1300’s. Today, the Havasupai continue their traditions of farming, forestry and cattle raising with the addition of tourism. Operating a campground at the base of Havasu Falls, a lodge where visitors can stay and a restaurant which serves Indian tacos, Coke and burgers, the Havasupai's lives revolve around the h...Read More