Grand Canyon National Park
Grand Canyon National Park makes a national parks trip complete. One of the most scenic and certainly breathtaking vistas is found along the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, about 80 miles south of the Utah town of Kanab. The North Rim is conveniently located near other scenic national parks, making it fit naturally into a "Grand Circle" trip that includes Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Capitol Reef National Park, Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park, Mesa Verde and Monument Valley. Information on the Grand Canyon follows:
Grand Canyon National Park History
Designated a national park on February 26, 1919, the Grand Canyon is one of the seven Natural Wonders of the World. While the entire park rests in Northern Arizona, the quieter and less commercialized North Rim is a short drive from Kanab, Utah's Gateway to the Grand Canyon National Park.
Take a walk on the quiet side. Hiking, photography, and ranger programs are available at the North Rim. Since only about 10% of the Grand Canyon's annual 4 million visitors come to the North Rim, this side is far less congested than its southern counterpart. The Grand Canyon North Rim averages 1,000 to 1,500 feet higher that the South Rim, offering spectacular views from several easily accessible points, including Cape Royal (7,685 ft. elevation), Point Imperial (8,803 ft. elevation) and Bright Angel Point (8,255 ft. elevation). Bright Angel is also the location of the historic Grand Canyon Lodge and North Rim Visitor Center.
There are also ranger interpretive programs held daily on a variety of topics, plus programs at 8 pm every evening during the summer season at the North Rim Center auditorium. See the Utah.com database for a list of Grand Canyon tours, Grand Canyon hotels, and information on Grand Canyon lodging.
Additional information is available on the following North Rim activities
Access to the North Rim is via a paved highway that is officially open from mid-May through mid-October. The road may or may not be open at other times. Access us usually possible during early winter, and you may be able to get in during dry periods in spring. However, no services are available during these off-season periods. Back-country permits are required to camp outside developed campgrounds during all periods of the year.
From the southern Utah town of Kanab, take US 89A south for 36 miles to Jacob Lake, AZ, then take AZ Highway 67 south 27 miles to the Park Entrance. From the entrance to the North Rim Lodge and Visitor Center it is an additional 17 miles. Note: Arizona State Highway 67 from Jacob Lake to the North Rim has been designated the "Kaibab Plateau-North Rim Parkway" by the National Scenic Byway Program.
There is no regularly scheduled shuttle service at the North Rim at this time. All transportation is by foot, bicycle, private or chartered vehicles. A shuttle does operate on the South Rim.
Admission to the Park (good for 7 days) is $10 for individuals on foot, bicycle or motorcycle (children 16 and younger are admitted free). Private vehicles with one or more persons are $20 for 7 days. Commercial fees vary, as do back-country and camping fees and permits. Check Park website for latest information.
Hint: If you plan to visit 3 or more National Parks during a one year period, you may want to purchase a "National Parks Pass" good for admission to all National Parks for everyone in your vehicle for one year from the time of purchase. The annual "Pass" is $50 and is available at all National Park entrances.
For more information about the Grand Canyon:
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