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Grand Canyon National Park - OutdoorPlaces.Com
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 Ranger Led Activities, North Rim


 Trail Rider, Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona, United States, Copyright 1999, OutdoorPlaces.Com, All Rights Reserved
There is a lot more to see and do at Grand Canyon National Park then hike, camp, and go sightseeing.  A wide number of ranger lead activities and other programs like horseback and mule rides await.  If you start digging into everything there is to do at the Grand Canyon, you will soon discover you could spend the rest of your life there, and not have seen every last corner.

A variety of ranger led programs are available.  You can check the bulletin board located in the Grand Canyon Lodge for a listing of daily topics or look in the park newsletter.  Be aware that activities can change without notice, but there is a variety of interesting things to do.

Bad weather may cancel some or all of the programs.  The schedule below is provided to you so you can get an idea of the scope of program available at Grand Canyon National Park and does not reflect a year round program.  The 2000 National Park Service Program at Grand Canyon National Park, for the North Rim included:

Archaeology Tour, Sunday through Saturday at 2:00 PM:  Learn about the ancient residents of the Grand Canyon.  This 45 minute program explores the largest excavated pueblo on the North Rim.  Meet at the Wallahalla Overlook for a short walk to the ruins.

Geology Walk, Sunday through Saturday at 3:30 PM:  This 1-1/2 mile walk down the Transept Trail explores the geological events that formed the Grand Canyon.  Allow one hour to complete the program.  Meet at the east patio of the Grand Canyon Lodge.

Night Walk, Sunday through Saturday at 9:15 PM:  This 1/2 mile walk explores the wildlife that comes out at night, and the sky above Grand Canyon National Park.  Nightly topics are posted on the bulletin board located at the visitors center.  Allow one hour to complete the program and be sure to bring a jacket and flashlight.

  Horseback & Mule Rides, North Rim  

Mule Rides from the North Rim are arranged through Canyon Trail Rides of Tropic, Utah by calling (435) 679-8665 or writing to PO BOX 128, Topic, Utah 84776.  Operating in the Grand Canyon for over 20 years, they over four different programs ranging from one hour to an entire day.  Mule Rides do not go down to the Colorado River from the North Rim due to trail conditions.  If you want to take a mule trip to the Colorado River, you will have to do that from the South Rim.

Mule trips should be booked as early as possible.  A waiting list is available but cancellations rarely happen.  People taking mule trips should meet in front of the Grand Canyon Lodge a 1/2 hour before your scheduled trip to take the shuttle to the trailhead.  Programs offered and restrictions are:

6 year age limit
220 lb. weight limit
9:00 a.m. & 2:00 p.m.
$15.00 per person
8 year age limit
200 lb. limit 
8:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m.
$40.00 per person 
8 year age limit
200 lb. weight limit
8:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m.
$40.00 per person 
12 year age limit
200 lb. weight limit
8:00 a.m.
$95.00 per person 
  Sunrise & Sunset, North Rim  

Whomever said the best things in life aren't free has never seen the sunrise or sunset at Grand Canyon National Park.  Sunrise and Sunset times can be found in the National Park newsletter or on the bulletin board at the Grand Canyon Lodge.  Make sure to arrive about 90 minutes before the sunrise or the sunset to get a good spot and to catch the full experience.  To ask the question, "which time is better," is futile.  The views of the Canyon changes with the position of the sun, and the same vista will provide unique views at either time.  Make sure to bring a jacket as it will be cool in the morning, or become cool in the evening.  If you watch a sunset make sure to bring a flashlight and be familiar with the trail coming back out.

  Stargazing, North Rim  

Grand Canyon National Park is famous for it's night skies.  It is debatable if the best time to be at the Grand Canyon is during a full moon or a new moon.  On nights with a new moon, you will easily be able to see the Milky Way leaving it's hazy trail across the night sky.  The clarity on clear nights is breathtaking.  On nights with a full moon, you can walk down to Bright Angel Point.  Keep your flashlight low to the ground respecting your fellow stargazers.

Let your eyes adjust to the low light of the moon and gaze at the canyon.  The moonlight casts an eerie light on the landscape giving it an ethereal appearance.  After about 30 minutes, you will be convinced you could walk without your flashlight to the Canyon floor. (but I wouldn't try it).  Experts in photography with the proper equipment can get incredible photographs.  Make sure to bring a flashlight and a jacket.