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South Kaibab Trail to Cremation Canyon


Adventure Details

Welcome to the Grand Canyon Cremation Canyon backpacking page! All the information you desire can be found amongst these pages. 

South Kaibab Trail to Cremation Canyon


A Cremation Canyon backpacking trip gives you the best of two Grand Canyon worlds - the ever popular and busy Phantom Ranch and Bright Angel Campground, but the chance to camp under the stars away from the crowds. The hike starts down the South Kaibab trail and then along the Tonto Trail a couple miles to set up camp for two nights - a great place to have some time to yourself.  (Kaibab is pronounced KY-bab where KY rhymes with Eye and bab rhymes with cab - for those of you who are hooked on Phoenics). You will get a full day day hiking to the bottom and exploring some side canyons, hanging out on the beach of the Colorado River and having some refreshments at Phantom Ranch. This 2nd day ensures your entrance into the exclusive Mile Deep Club as well! On the last day, choose the short, steep hike via the South Kaibab Trail or the longer hike along the Tonto and Bright Angel Trails.  This trip is a great alternative to Indian Garden - great canyon experience with fewer people.  Want less time in the canyon? The Cremation Canyon trip can be done in 2 days as well!

Need more information about the trail? Click here for the official South Kaibab Trail description from Grand Canyon National Park.

Day 1

You will be picked up from your hotel in North Scottsdale and travel to the canyon. Upon arriving at the canyon, the group will hike down the South Kaibab Trail to the Tonto Trail where you head east to a campsite for the next two nights in Cremation Canyon. You will drop about 3,400 ft. (1,036m) and cover about 6.5 miles (10.4km) before reaching your destination. The hike usually takes about 5-6 hours to complete.

Day 2

Shed your big backpacks and take a day hike to the river and Phantom Ranch. The round trip hiking distance is 7 miles (11.2km) and you will spend significant time at the bottom of the canyon this day. Besides visiting Phantom Ranch, you will have time to get into the Colorado River and even hike part way up the Clear Creek Trail if time permits. The change in elevation from Cremation Canyon to the river is 1,400 ft. (427m).

Day 3

Pack up and hike out, back along the South Kaibab Trail. Yes, it is the same trail, but no, it will not look the same. You will see so many things you never noticed as you were hiking down - mostly because your back was to it as you probably don't have eyes in the back of your head. The hike today is 6.5 miles with an overall elevation change of 3,400 ft.


Share your experience!    Review this trip


My partner and I loved this trip. The guide (Liz!) was fantastic! Liz set a good pace and supported us the whole way down and back up. The campsite is secluded and beautiful, and the day trip (on day 2) down to Phantom Ranch was a lot of fun. Whilst there is no toilet at the campsite, the trip is scheduled such that you visit toilets along the South Kaibab Trail frequently enough so that this isn't an issue. Every meal feels like a feast and it was lovely to share it with the other people on our trip. We will definitely check out other trips offered by Just Roughin' It when we next visit the USA.




A Wonderful romp in the canyon! Our guide, Jeff, was amazingly patient, well versed in all things Grand Canyon and good with kids too. My nine year old son who had never experienced something this challenging still talks about how 'cool' Jeff was to him by encouraging him all the way. The hike itself was beautiful and breathtaking at times.
We had a great time and will definitely choose again soon.




Trip Cost Per Person
Choose a price to find your trip dates!

2 Day

3 Day

What's included?

  • Round trip transportation from Fairfield Inn Scottsdale North (Phoenix area). Please note that this logistic may vary based on the time of year.
  • All permits, fees and taxes.
  • All food while on the trail prepared on the trail by your guide.
  • Double occupancy tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, backpack, trekking poles. A single tent is available for an additional $50.
  • A certified, medically trained guide that will lead you safely on your journey. 
  • An unforgettable experience! 

Prices do not include guide gratuity ($25-$35 per person per day is recommended).

Click here for Booking and Cancellation Policies

Travel Protection

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, click here or 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



Upcoming Trip Schedule

Select a date below to get started.

Number of DaysDatesPrice/person
3 daysSep 14,2018 - Sep 16,2018$900Check Availability / More Info
2 daysSep 22,2018 - Sep 23,2018$750Check Availability / More Info
3 daysSep 24,2018 - Sep 26,2018$900Check Availability / More Info
3 daysOct 5,2018 - Oct 7,2018$900Check Availability / More Info
3 daysOct 12,2018 - Oct 14,2018$900Check Availability / More Info
2 daysOct 20,2018 - Oct 21,2018$750Check Availability / More Info
3 daysOct 30,2018 - Nov 1,2018$900Check Availability / More Info
3 daysNov 14,2018 - Nov 16,2018$900Check Availability / More Info
3 daysNov 28,2018 - Nov 30,2018$878Check Availability / More Info


Sound like the right adventure for you?

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Related Destinations

"My favorite hike is the Red Peak Pass in Yosemite. High mountain lakes, wide open meadows and the highest pass in Yosemite National Park - so views are endless. Best part is there are so few people to encounter - no 300 person line attempting the ascent up Half Dome! "
Kyle Sherman
5 years experience
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