Bright Angel Trail to Indian Gardenprint
The Havasupai Tribe once inhabited the area in Grand Canyon that is now known as Indian Garden and once you arrive, you will see why they once called this place home. This is the easiest Grand Canyon hiking trip in the park, but you will not be disappointed! Indian Garden is the perfect trip for the hot summer months, beginning backpackers or for families with younger children. Camping at Indian Garden for two nights allows for you to set up a base camp about 3,000 feet below the rim. Then you can just day hike to the bottom and explore Phantom Ranch, the Colorado River and Bright Angel Creek, all with just a day pack. Or, spend some private hiking time and explore the Tonto Trail for expansive views of the canyon and the wide open skies above. And, with our outfitting services for your Grand Canyon backpacking trip, your experience will be more enjoyable since we will do the footwork for you. Click here for more information about JRI's outfitting services.
The trip begins on the Grand Canyon's South Rim, hiking 4.5 miles to Indian Garden via the popular Bright Angel Trail. You will end the backpacking portion of the hike at Indian Garden campground by Garden Creek and beneath a canopy of Cottonwood trees. Once there, choose from a number of possible Grand Canyon day hikes - Plateau Point, Colorado River, Tonto Trail, etc. Once you are finished enjoying the area, you will hike back out to the South Rim along the same trail.
A 2 day option is also available, covering the same route but with little chance to make it to the Colorado River unless physically ready to hike to the bottom on day one after arriving at Indian Garden.
Need more information about the trail? Click here for the official Bright Angel Trail description from Grand Canyon National Park.
Hike down the Bright Angel Trail to Indian Garden where you will camp for two nights. You will drop about 3,000 feet (914 m) over 4.5 miles (7.24 km). The hike usually takes between 2.5 and 3 hours to complete. Later in the afternoon, take an easy hike to Plateau Point for some amazing views of the inner gorge and the Colorado River.
Today, shed your big backpacks and take a day hike to the river and to Phantom Ranch. The round trip hike is 10 miles (16 km) but you can spend significant time at the bottom and at Phantom Ranch, exploring the area - Colorado River, Bright Angel Creek and the canteen at Phantom Ranch. The change in elevation from Indian Garden to the river is 1,400 ft (427 m).
Pack up camp and hike out the way you hiked into the canyon along the Bright Angel Trail. The distance is 4.5 miles (7.24 km), climbing 3,000 ft (914.4 m) in elevation over that distance. Once at the top, set aside time to have lunch and souvenir shop or stay a night on the South Rim. The average time to hike out is between 4 and 5 hours.
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Did this great trip with my family. Kids ranged from 11-16. Our guide Adam was knowledgeable and friendly. Very in tune to the various needs of our group. Setting is the best in the world and JRI is a great outfit. Not cheap but you get top quality gear and people. My advice to myself if doing it again - don't pack more snacks than you really need.
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- 65-75 liter multi-day backpack
- 2 person ultralight backpacking tent (1 tent per 2 people)
- Sleeping bag appropriate for the season you are hiking (20 F to 45 F synthetic bag)
- Therm-A-Rest Z-lite backpacking mat
- 1 pair trekking poles
- 1 backpacking stove and fuel (1 stove per 2 people)
- Backpacking meals (dinner and breakfast)
- Trip planning and logistics assistance
*Please note - Just Roughin' It is not a guide service for Grand Canyon National Park. Just Roughin' It is providing trip planning and outfitting service and will not be physically present during your hike. Hikers are required to know their fitness abilities and limitations on any backpacking route they choose to apply for directly from Grand Canyon National Park. Hikers will be required to sign a waiver when picking up the outfitter package.
Now’s the time to consider purchasing a travel protection plan to help protect your trip investment. For more information on the available plans or to enroll, contact Travelex Insurance Services at 800-228-9792 and reference location number 03-0152.
Travel Insurance is underwritten by, Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Company, NAIC #22276. 11.17 W20