Best Horseback Riding Grand Canyon

Ellen Grant
• Friday, 18 December, 2020
• 7 min read

Continuing onto the GrandCanyon, your tour guide will tell you all about the canyon and the Xalapa Indians. The rest of the time, you can relax and enjoy your horse's swaying motion and the ponderosa pine forest.

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(Source: matadornetwork.com)


The friendly horses make this a great, albeit expensive, family activity. Tall) are allowed on the 1-hour trail rides, which, like the 2-hour ones, loop through the Kebab National Forest near the stables.

Participants should wear long pants and closed-toe footwear, and bring plenty of water. Wearing floppy hats and clutching rain slickers, the day's mule riders gather at 7am (8am in winter) every day at a corral west of Bright Angel Lodge (on the South Rim) to prepare for their rides.

You can almost hear the jangling nerves as they contemplate the prospect of descending narrow trails above steep cliffs on animals hardly famous for their willingness to comply. Although the mules walk close to the edges and have been known to back off the trails, accidents are rare, especially among riders who follow the wrangler's instructions.

In fact, mule trips have been going into the canyon for more than a century without a single fatality from a fall. In fact, the National Park Service has limited the destination and number of mule rides, no longer allowing the 1-day trip to Plateau Point.

It travels from the Livery Barn in GrandCanyon Village through pinon pine forest to the Abyss Overlook. Riders have about 30 minutes here to take in the magnificent 3,000-foot vertical drop and stunning panorama.

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The other rides are part of 1- or 2-night packages that include lodging and meals at Phantom Ranch. Four types of rides, open to ages 7 and up, are offered; the easiest goes 1 mile along the rim on the Ken Patrick Trail before turning back.

One stays on the rim, following the Ken Patrick and Uncle Jim trails to a canyon viewpoint; the other descends 2 miles into the canyon on the North Kebab Trail, turning back at Susie Tunnel. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.

After your first day of adventures, you'll rest easy sleeping under the stars in either a double mattress Conestoga covered wagon or a room inside Bar 10 Ranch's lodge. Unlike, partial canyon routes, this adventure is suitable for individuals of all fitness levels, including children, as it does not require a strenuous hike to begin or end the trip.

Your guides each have their own specialty, including geology, history and local culture, and they're always happy to share their knowledge as you drift past million-year-old rock walls. These daily hikes will give you the chance to explore beautiful side canyons, spring-fed streams, notable geological sites, and culturally significant rock art.

As the days pass, you’ll get more and more comfortable rafting and exploring GrandCanyon National Park, arriving at a new campsite each late afternoon and dining river-side. Not only will your qualified and talented river guides prepare gourmet meals, but they are also well versed in emergency first aid, geology, wildlife, and canyon lore.

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Below, visitors can view the roaring Colorado River, cutting 277 miles across the bottom of the canyon. While exploring the South Rim on foot, by bike or in your car, keep an eye out for the varied animal life that has made the canyon area home.

Elk, mule deer, coyotes, lizards, songbirds and the endangered California condor are frequent wildlife sightings. The surrounding forest was filled with deer, elk and birds, yet had enough breaks in the tree cover to allow for decent solar power generation on our portable panel during the day.

We felt like we were in an isolated forest, even though we were in the middle of the busiest of the busy national parks,” say Air streamers Zambia Ventures. From the campground, take the Greenway, a paved walking and biking trail that leads to scenic overlooks and the Visitor Center.

For those adventurous explorers, the Bright Angel and South Kebab trails descend into the canyon. Visitors who want to explore in a more leisurely fashion can book a day or overnight mule riding trips into the canyon and along the rim and the park's concessionaire.

At Mather, you’ll get fantastic views from its two overlooks built on rocks that project out over the canyon. At the end of this route sits the historic 70-foot Desert View Watchtower with an observation deck.

canyon grand ranch cowboy riding horseback range
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Trailer Village lets visitors enjoy the GrandCanyon National Park in comfort. On the South Rim lies the Tuscan Ranger District of Kebab, on the northern portion of the Cocooning Plateau.

Take the Vishnu Trail, a 1.1-mile scenic loop that begins just north of the historic Grandview Lookout Tower. Great for biking, horseback riding, hiking and viewing the forest, the trail goes out to a point on the Cocooning Rim with glorious vistas of the canyon in the distance.

This scenic overlook offers far-reaching views along a broad section of the GrandCanyon and is named for artist Thomas Moran. Back at camp, you can expect a gentle landscape dotted by intermittent steep drainages, such as the Cocooning Rim and Red Butte.

Daytime is perfect for birdwatching among the pines, shrubs and wildflowers, with pygmy nuthatches, seller’s jays and rufous-crowned sparrows. At night, expect a dark sky lit with myriad stars and the distant howls of coyotes.

It’s also home to vibrant wildlife, scenic hiking trails and unmatched views of the canyon. Layers of visible rock below display billions of years of geologic history.

horseback riding canyon grand tucson near go
(Source: www.mygrandcanyonpark.com)

Campers have access to the Transept Trail, which cuts along the rim to the visitor center and lodge. Begin your trek before 7 am, though, as Roaring Springs lies 3,050 feet below the canyon rim and is 9.4 miles round-trip.

At camp, you’ll have a picnic table, campfire ring with a cooking grill and access to drinking water from spigots placed throughout the campground. The visitor center and the GrandCanyon Lodge, complete with dining room, deli, general store, gift shop and post office, are one mile south of the campground.

Air streamers Aluminum describe Forest Road 611 East Rim as “spectacular camping on the rim.” While this area lies in the adjacent Kebab National Forest, you won’t miss a thing in terms of the canyon ’s North Rim experience. As a bit of history, Major John Wesley Powell, famed explorer of the Colorado River, was the first in written record to apply the term “Kebab” to the plateau.

Sage, grasslands and canyons of lower elevations surround the forest canopies. With elevations of up to 9,000 feet, this plateau is bordered on the south by the GrandCanyon and on the east and west by tributary canyons of the Colorado River.

If you’ve trained and are ready to traverse the canyon, North Kebab Trail can be followed down to the Colorado River. Mule rides are available for trips to a variety of places, including several thousand feet down into the canyon.

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(Source: www.canyonrides.com)

Horseback riding at our beautiful Los Pedro Ranch for novice and experienced riders. Private Chuck Wagon meals on the Rim of Pale Duo Canyon.

As you continue your ride through the valley you’ll discover why the magnificent views and dramatic backdrop inspired Hollywood to film some of the greatest western movies of all time here on location in Snow Canyon. Movies like Broken Arrow, Jeremiah Johnson, The Conquerors as well as parts of Butch Cassidy and the Sun dance Kid.

Year round daily rides are scheduled from 1-3pm, but in the heat of summer, for your comfort, we offer sunset rides and morning rides along the north rim of the park (1500 feet higher in elevation) at the Red Mountain Trailhead. Your Guide -- Patty Arnett, a knowledgeable and experienced horsewoman for over 30 years, owning a training stables, competing at the international level (her stallion meddled at the Olympics), breeding horses and operating enjoyable and safe trail rides in southwest Utah.

Turn right off exit ramp which will have you on Bluff Street driving north out of town (stay in right lane as it turns into Highway 18 so follow those signs) to mile marker 10. Shortly after mile marker 10 there will be a guard rail on the left side of the road.

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