Grand Canyon Tips and Tales
The Bright Angel Trail
I visited the Grand Canyon in the past, but my wife never has.
We took the fixed wing flite over it, and later visited the South Rim.
Visiting the South Rim, in our humble opinions, is the easiest & best way to see it first time, and first hand.
The Bright Angel Trail (sometimes spelled Brite BTW) is accessable at the south rim just behind the Bright Angel Hotel.
A U.S. senator once claimed the trail his, and charged a whopping $1 in
1890's dollars to access the trail.
So,,,, something had to be done.
The railroad then extended it's line a few hundred yards, and along with Fred Harvey built the El Tovar Hotel, and promptly put the Senator and his hotel out of business.
The National Park Service bulldozed the Senators hotel, re-took control of the trail, and the access toll was dropped.
You really fill your heart with the canyon by just walking a few feet down the trail.
At mile 1.5 is a rest station, and some opt to just hike this far.
Our 7 year old, about 100 yds down the Bright Angel Trail.
Check out how beautiful it is. This is plenty far to experience the canyon from inside.
It's hot and high altitude, so even this short hike is tough.
The mule trips are booked 2 years in advance, so you have to plan that out in advance.
40 years ago, the mule trip was $250, one can imagine what it costs now.
We didn't enquire, but it is a teriffic ride for sure.
9.2 miles to the Phantom Ranch at the bottom of the canyon for an overnite stay.
We snapped this pic of the mules decending into the Grand Canyon from our flite over the canyon.
You access the South Rim from Arizona State Highway 64 traveling North from US Highway 40.
It's all right there for you. The Grand Canyon Airport if ya want to take a flite, and the Nat. Park South Rim entrance is just a few minutes down the road.
Absolutely walk through the El Tovar Hotel, you're welcome to. It's just a short walk from the Bright Angel Hotel and Bright Angel Trail.
Out front is a breathtaking view of the Canyon. Kids all said it looks like a painting.
If ya take the trail, read up, study up, and be equipped.
Flites over the Canyon are popular, so be sure to pre-book a flight reservation.
The Fixed wing flights are far cheaper than the helicopters.
Special equipped quiet props and jet engines.
Honestly I expected an old worn-out aircraft, but all the aircraft are nicely equipped, modern, quiet, and have nice Bose' noise canciling headphones for clear, comfortable narration.
The pilots seemed to go to special consideration for a comfortable, level flight. No crazy manuvers or anything.
Last edited by RoadTrippers A & R; 07-21-2007 at 10:17 PM.
I have been lucky enough to have spent several weeks over years in the Grand. One year spent about 30 days hiking and boating in the park. I well remember the Bright Angel Trail -- too many switchbacks!
Originally Posted by Ross & Alice
Enjoyed the photos and the report!
One other thing we stumbled upon Mark that really took us back:
It was the fantastic Grand Canyon Museum, located in the Bright Angel Hotel.
It's free, and it is something else.
Displays with interesting items of everything about the Grand Canyons human history.
Very well put together. A+ in our book.
It also features in addition to other Grand Canyon subjects, one of the best Fred Harvey collections. It will certainly catch your attention.
Fred Harvey was known for running hotels and restaurants in the west, and he runs both the Brite Angel and El Tovar at the South Rim.
Ya think no-way would one be interested in that, but it is done so well.
Visitors are taken back as they wander through.
Who ever put the museum together deserves a gold star next to their name.
My mother-in law starred with Judy Garland in "The Harvey Girls" movie.
I made an attempt to buy her awesome Harvey Girls Costume from the movie when MGM had its huge wardrobe sale some decades ago.
Debbie Reynolds had lots more money than me so I had to lump it and concede the sale to her. The shills were running up the price too.
Dorothys ruby slippers and the Harvey costumes were high on her MGM hit list. But that's another thread for another time.
A genuine Harvey "uniform" is on display, and does it ever look cool. I mentioned to Alice it was a classic time when chix did what ya told them to. She said; "that's not a funny statement, life was pretty tough for girls back when." Checking out the displays one gets that feeling.
Lots of other genuine artifacts are on display too.
A few pix from our flight over the canyon. The Grand Canyon Airlines plane does a lazy, gentle figure 8 from rim to rim. Flights booked solid with international travelers with money to burn.
Last edited by RoadTrippers A & R; 07-22-2007 at 07:48 AM.
Some good photos there. I can't believe we didn't do a flight over the Canyon whilst we were there. I feel like I really missed out now. I will have to return and do that someday. I also fancy the idea of the Mule Train down into the Canyon. Syv made a fascinating report of her experience recently. Sounds fantastic!
Thats a great story by Syv.
Some good tips for the uninitiated there. The flight sounds like a good time.
That's quite true - but it is interesting to see the look of surprise on people's faces (at least those in the know), when I tell them we went to the North Rim first!
Originally Posted by Ross & Alice