Before I begin telling you about one of my favorite hikes (for everyone in the family) I must tell you the backstory on our trip out to the Grand Canyon. I need you to think back a few years (2015) to when the Gold King Mine waste water spill happened in Silverton, Colorado. For those of you who don’t remember, it’s basically when an old gold mine broke open and released heavy metals into the San Juan rivershed. This rivershed then empties into the Colorado River which make its way to Lake Powell! (A wonderful time might I add) Well this water, with all the heavy metals, had the same arrival date as our pitstop to Lake Powell. We had no idea of our fellow visitor! We were headed past Lake Powell and decided to stop and swim for a little bit because it had been literally 8 days since a real shower. (No Shame here) So we did just that and swam the most glorious swim of our dirty lives! I mean, Nick was even floating on his back and water-fountaining like a champ!
Fast Forward 2 hours and we see a massive storm out in the distance on our way to The Grand Canyon, so we try to get a radio station covering the weather….
Today we would like to bring you a warning, please do not eat fish caught in San Juan River or Glen Canyon National Park (contains parts of Lake Powell). Please wash immediately after swimming in the lake!
We almost died laughing because at this point in our trip just about every little thing had happened! Turns out the toxic plume was still at very low levels and they were just taking extra precautions! But still one of my favorite stories to tell about our cross-country trip!
For starters, I love this hike. It is not super challenging, but boy is it an enjoyable escape from the massive crowds that tend to plague The Grand Canyon. The route out to the viewpoint is an old dirt road that begins at the parking lot of mile marker 246. The parking lot is often closed off or gated, but we just parked on the side and ventured onto the trail! Only about two miles out and back.
There are bathrooms and picnic tables at the end of this hike and the viewpoint is absolutely spectacular!
Side Note on this Hike: You can have weddings here or events like family reunions! You have to apply for a permit, but from May 1st to October 15th, you can have your national park wedding! (As long as you have less than 85 people!) So get ready to grill up and say “I Do” in front of a spectacular backdrop!
Just Two Kids Sitting at The Grand Canyon!
Seriously though, this is one of the best hikes that is do-able for everyone in the family! I suggest this hike to everyone I know and it has consistently been one of their favorite memories! Not only because there are much fewer people but because the 360 degree views are amazing! I have yet to visit at sunrise or sunset but word on the street is that it is a showstopper!
Other Must See Places in the Area for Roadtrippers
- Pin on Lake Powell (in Glen Canyon National Park)
- Grand Canyon National Park
- Monument Valley
- Page, Arizona
- Horseshoe Bend
- Antelope Canyon (All of those beautiful Canyon Pictures you see everywhere)
- Some Great Breakfast (shameless plug from my own experiences)
- Zion National Park
- Havasupai Falls (This one needs prior planning and is at least a 2 day trip!)
- Sooo many other wonderful places
- Look for Elk on your way out! We have spotted some beautiful animals!
- If you are driving out of the park that night, you have a while to go before civilization other than directly outside of the park, so make sure you fill up on gas before entering/exiting!
- Take all the pictures and do all the hikes you can!