Hiking The South Rim: Torn Tights, Unicorns & A Few Tips Along The Way
Exploring one of the most amazing natural wonders on earth one might easily get a bit overwhelmed in just two short days. Never having been to the site myself no amount of planning could have fully prepared me for the adventures which abounded.
Do I hike a trail into the canyon? Do I follow the rim trails to see the highest vistas? Do I simply take the shuttles and let them give me a tour of all the beauty? Or do I take a mule team?
In the limited time I was sharing with my friend here I knew there was no possible way to see everything, but boy was I going to try to see the most I could! We decided after our first night to take the shuttle system to the end of the Red Route. This route is revered as the best way to explore the south rim's most masterview points. Some near 8 miles of bending, winding trails to explore and hike would be our challenge to face, and we couldn't wait.
A full shuttle trip from start to finish is about 90 minutes, however there are numerous stops along the way for those looking to explore a bit. We chose to ride nearly 40 minutes to the turn around point and begin our adventure. From there we hiked back to the central village area of the Grand Canyon's South Rim.
I cannot explain the views or the challenge in a way which would even do it justice. Paved paths opened up to primitive winding off beat trails over jagged rocks and shelves seemingly held on by a thread. The colors so vibrant with red and purples and a single cloud could cast a shadow the size of a city. It was as though someone had painted it and had the elements of wind not been present to remind you of its reality you might drift into a haze of disbelief.
Through Pima Point, Monument Creek Vista and The Abyss we did not see much foot traffic and it was as though we were alone entirely. By Mohave Point, Hopi Point and Powell Point we seemed to see more tourists teetering closer and closer to ledges hoping to get the perfect picture.
The days weather was ideal and the route proved to be worth its reviews. The only downfall to the lengthy hike was it limited our opportunity to go into the canyon itself, an item which until next time will remain on my bucket list!