Grand Canyon North Rim

 

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Mileage: Mount Carmel Jct.
Tuweep 90 miles
South Canyon 75 miles
North Rim 85 miles
Zion Park 12 miles
Bryce Canyon 60 miles
Grand Staircase 9 miles
Cedar Breaks 45 miles
Red Canyon 47 miles
Dixie Forest 22 miles
Sand Dunes 11 miles

The Ultimate Southwest Vacation includes the Grand Canyon!

Plan your North Rim Grand Canyon vacation with our Arizona Maps and Information

In these pages you will find insiders information on the best Grand Canyon hikes and Backpacks including Tuweep and South Canyon Trails. This detailed guide includes road maps, park maps, pictures, trail beta, backpacking, history, fees, geology, flora, fauna, campgrounds, things for kids to do and even information on Grand Canyon North Rim hidden treasures.

Making grand memories in the Arizona national parks.

Arizona

 

Grand Canyon North Rim map

Grand Canyon North Rim Road Map

Directions to North Rim Grand Canyon: From Zion National Park, take on U-9 through the park to Mt. Carmel Jct. Turn south on US-89 to Kanab. There is only one stop light in Kanab; this is where US-89 changes to ALT 89. Fredonia, Arizona is 6 miles. In Fredona take 89A to Jacob lake (36 miles), then take AZ 67 to the Grand Canyon North Rim park entrance.

Winter Road Conditions and
Highway 67 Road Closures

Toroweap - Tuweep

Toroweap Point offers the most magnificent view in the entire Grand Canyon, but the backcountry road to the rim keeps most visitors away.

Directions to Tuweep
Tuweep Map

The main entrance is accessed from either Hurricane, Utah or Fredonia, Arizona along AZ 389, located 7 miles west of Fredonia. A small sign pointing towards the dirt BLM road (109) road will say: Toroweap 61 miles." Drive slowly along this road or your chances of having a punctured tired increase greatly. The first 20 miles of the road seem harmless, but the reputation the road has for puncturing tires is well deserved. Make sure you have a spare tire and all the tools needed to change a tire. If you plan to travel at night make sure you have a flashlight. Night travel is also slowed by the numerous jackrabbits that run in the path. Watch for rocks that are standing up on end and travel slow over the cattle guards. Brings lots of water and blankets in case you become stranded. This road gets little travel, so be prepared. There are no services during the 5 hour round trip on the primitive backcountry road. This road may be impassable when wet. Call the ranger station for road conditions before travel during inclement weather. (928.638.7888) After reaching the entrance to Tuweep there are several more miles to drive to get to the view point. A 4WD will giving provide a smoother ride over the washboard road, but it is not usually required if the roads are dry.  A high clearance vehicle is mandatory however.

Nearby Hiking

Snake Gulch Rock Art
 This huge site of pictographs is located near the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and the Kaibab Forest in the Kanab Wilderness Area.

Nearby View Points

Crazy Jug Point
From Fredonia, Arizona, drive south on Highway 89A toward Jacob Lake for 1.5 miles and look for Forest Road 22 on the right. Turn right onto Forest Road 22 and follow the road, driving past several intersections and signs that indicate various vistas. At mile 28, notice the Big Springs Field Ranger Station. At 33 miles, turn right onto Forest Road 425, headed toward Crazy Jug and Monument Point. There is another intersection at mile 41, continue straight on Forest Road 425 to Crazy Jug Point. map

Monument Point
Follow the directions above, but  continue on Road 425 past Crazy Jug. Look for a corral and a "Y" in the road at mile 43 where you will turn right on Forest Road 292. Continue for .3 miles to the next "Y" and turn right. There is one more intersection at 44.5 miles. Continue straight through it and drive 2 more miles to Monument Point. map

 

 

 

 

Tuweep - Toroweap

If you stop and ask directions you will find some locals will call it Toroweap and others will call it Tuweep. Toroweap was given by John Wesley Powell, but today it is used only to describe features of the area including the fault, formation and the point. The name Tuweep came into use to describe the white settlement and later the park district.

A trip to Tuweep is not for everyone, but for those who do not mind driving for 2.5 hours on a washboard dirt, tire ripping, primitive road to the very edge of the Grand Canyon, Tuweep is magnificent! Although think again if you have a fear of heights. Toroweap Point is the lowest viewpoint in the Grand Canyon, but the 3000' sheer unfenced cliff gives even those with no fear of heights an uneasy feeling when they step out to the edge to see the Colorado River flowing below.

The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is remote, but the Tuweep section of the North Rim is 2.5 hours from any kind of civilization. Situated at 4550' the point rarely gets snow. Unlike the North Rim, the road to Tuweep is open year round, but may be impassible if wet. Call the ranger station, before travel, to obtain road conditions: 928-638-7875.

Don't expect anything as fancy as a ranger booth where fees are accessed when entering Tuweep. There is a year-round ranger station, about thirty minutes from the rim, equipped with an emergency phone. Hiking information and backcountry permits can be obtained at the station, but it is better to obtain a permit before venturing into the area. A permit is not needed to hike or to camp in the Toroweap Campground.
Tuweep Photo Album

Colorado River and Lava Falls
The Colorado River approaches from the east and flows toward the west. Downstream is Lava Falls. When looking down into the river, look for Vulcan's Anvil. This is a 50' lava neck left over from an extinct lava vent. Lava Falls holds some of the roughest water of the Colorado, where water drops abruptly at the falls with great force.

Nampaweap Petroglyphs
On the way to Tuweep, keep your eyes peeled for a sign indicating the Mt. Trumbull Road. Follow this road for about 3 miles to the turnoff for the Nampaweap (foot canyon) Petroglyphs. There is a signed parking area. Follow the signs to the petroglyphs. The area is also called Billy Goat Canyon due to the mountain sheep drawn on the basalt rocks. Do not climb on the rocks. The petroglyphs can be seen from below. The petroglyphs are Archaic, Anasazi and Paiute.
Nampaweap Petroglyphs Photos

Hiking at Tuweep

Shaman's Gallery - Tuckup Trail
Hiking a 6.2 mile round-trip on the Tuckup Trail allows hikers to see some of the most magnificent pictographs in the Grand Canyon. The paintings were discovered by mule wrangler and guide, Gordon Smith in 1986 and thus are often called Gordon's Panel. These multi-colored paintings are exceptionally fragile and it is believed they were painted before 1000 B.C. Some of the images are life sized, many are painted in layers and all are excitingly elaborate.
Shaman's Gallery Photos

Lava Falls
The park service has a warning posted at the Toroweap Overlook that says: Do not hike this trail if it's over 80 degrees and if you do, take at least one gallon of water per person. The trail is only 1.5 miles, but the elevation change is 2540'. It takes 2-4 hours to hike down and 2-6 hours to hike back up. This is not a trail, but a cairned route down loose scree! Be prepared for scrambling and a rocky, un-maintained trail in a remote and primitive area.
Lava Falls Trail Photo Album

Vulcan's Throne Hike
When approaching the rim a curious 600' hill is seen to the right (west) of the road. This is a basaltic cinder cone that is considered to be a young volcano. This was a volcano that erupted on the flat about 74,000 years ago. The trailhead is located next to the Lava Falls Trailhead. Although there is not a trail, hiking is allowed up to the top of the cone. The route is a 1.5 mile round trip.

Saddle Horse Canyon Trail
You would have passed this trailhead when driving to the rim, but the sign is not easy to see unless you are looking for it. Park at the rim and walk back along the road. Look for a pull-over and a small sign post. This easy trail leads to north views from the rim. The trail is about 1.6 miles roundtrip, but you can continue further along the rim.
Saddle Horse Canyon Trail Photos

Esplanade Loop Trail
Begin at the Toroweap campground and follow the trail toward the rim. The trail is 2.9 miles round trip.

Toroweap Campground
Two groups of campers are allowed to stay the night at the point. There are picnic tables and restrooms. The camping is in a wide open area with little shelter, but the view of the rim from the sites are incredible. The Toroweap campground has more shelter and is located just a little farther from the point. There are no fees or permits needed and sites are on a first come, first use basis. Be aware that if all campsites are full a permit is needed to camp in other areas. There are vault toilets at the campgrounds.

Tuweep Permits
The North Rim Backcountry Information Center is open mid-May to mid-October from 8am-noon and 1-5pm. Permits might also be available at Pipe Springs, the Kanab BLM office or the Interagency office in St. George.

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Were it a valley plain it would make a state. It can be seen only in parts from hour to hour and from day to day and from week to week and from month to month. A year scarcely suffices to see it all. It has infinite variety, and no part is ever duplicated. Its colors, though many and complex in any instant, change with the ascending and declining sun; lights and shadows appear and vanish with the passing clouds, and the changing seasons mark their passage in changing colors.
-- John Wesley Powell

Photo: North Kaibab Trail:
North Rim Grand Canyon
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Photography by Tanya

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