North Kaibab Trail
North Kaibab is the only maintained North Rim trail that descends into the Grand Canyon. All other Trails stay up on the rim. Hiking down to the river is a strenuous multi-day backpacking trip, requiring permits that are hard to get. We recommend day hiking as far as you are comfortable and then returning the way you came in. But be careful not to go farther than you should. You'll make good time hiking downhill during the cool of morning. Hiking back out will be a slow go during the heat of afternoon. Carry plenty of water. Lack of water is the most common problem encountered by hikers.
This trail is also used by mules.
The trailhead is at the top of Roaring Springs Canyon, along the main road just before it reaches the North Rim visitors center and lodge.
It is 1.5 miles round trip to Coconino Overlook. Just below the overlook, the trail drops down a set of serious switchbacks, plunging ever deeper into the canyon.
It is 4 miles round trip to Supai Tunnel. Casual hikers should turn around here.
It is 9.4 miles round trip to Roaring Springs. All day hikers are encouraged to turn around here. Hiking to this point gives you a true perspective of the enormity of the Grand Canyon. Most hikers need 7-8 hours to hike to Roaring Springs and then back to the trailhead. Start hiking before 7 am if you are attempting this trail during summer.