The North Rim Campground is located on the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park in northern Arizona. The canyon's rustic and less populated North Rim is home to abundant wildlife, hiking trails, and unparalleled views of one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. The facility is at an elevation of 8,200 ft., with pleasant summer temperatures and frequent afternoon thunderstorms. There may still be snow on the ground when the campground opens in mid-May; likewise, it may snow before the last reservation day in mid-October. Because of this variability, visitors should come prepared for any weather.
Hiking is the most popular activity for visitors. Campers have access to the Transept Trail, an unpaved trail that travels along the rim to the visitor center and lodge, as well as the Bridle Trail, which cuts through the forest and connects with the North Kaibab Trail. The Bridle Trail is the only trail that allows bikes and pets. The North Kaibab Trail descends into the Inner Canyon and is a short walk from the campground.
There are picnic tables and campfire rings with cooking grills at each of the 90 campsites, as well as drinking water spigots placed throughout the campground. Coin-operated showers and laundry are available within walking distance. The Grand Canyon Lodge dining room, deli, general store, gift shop and post office are only operational from May 15 to October 15. The Grand Canyon Lodge and visitor center are one mile south of the campground. The nearest town is Jacob Lake, 41 miles away, and the closest full service grocery stores and medical facilities are in Kanab, Utah and Page, Arizona.
North Rim Campground is shaded by large Ponderosa pines interspersed with aspens, which turn golden-yellow in the early fall. The campground borders Transept Canyon, a side canyon that drains into the main canyon, providing a stunning view for the premium campsites. The North Rim lies on the Kaibab Plateau, an area that has been uplifted by geologic processes, making it higher in elevation. Many species of wildlife call the Kaibab home, including the tassel-eared Kaibab squirrel which is found nowhere else in the world. A short walk along the Transept Trail or a visit to the Grand Canyon Lodge during sunrise or sunset yields spectacular views of yellow, orange, red and violet on the canyon walls. Although there is no view of the Colorado River from North Rim, layers of rock display billions of years of geologic history.
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Just spent one night tent camping, but it was a wonderful experience.
The North Rim Campground is the only campground located on the North Rim, and although massive, you HAVE to reserve your campsite 6 months in advance or it is likely you will not get one. We had planned our road trip way in advance for this reason. There are some “prime view” sites but they go very quickly. We ended up with a tent-only site which was on its own loop off to the side, but you only had to walk a few yards to look out over the rim. The whole park is beautiful, so don’t stress on getting a particular view.
The tent-only sites had their own designated parking spot not far from the site itself. The sites were close together but staggered so that you were not right up next to your neighbor. They each came with a fire pit, picnic table, and a leveled tent space. There are many bathroom locations around the sites, I did however look at the map online beforehand to get a site close to one. We were next to not only the “original” vault toilets but also “real” toilets that had sinks and a small mirror, plus a dish washing station.
There were a few potable water stations throughout, but keep in mind, if the weather is below freezing it is likely going to freeze and not work. It was snowing while we were there (which is unusual for spring) and the water did not work, thankfully we had brought our own. There is also a camp store with all sorts of groceries and resupplying needs (food, plastic utensils, fuel, candy, beer…..you know the necessities.) They have coin showers and laundry located near the ranger hut as well.
From the campsite, there is a short 2 mile hike over to The Lodge, which has a couple restaurants, coffee hut and bar, and gift shop. This is also where you will find the paths out to a few viewing areas of the Grand Canyon. Be aware it is very crowded, but worth the hike or drive over.
Since we only had one full day to hike, we decided we would take that day to hike the North Kaibab which goes down into the canyon. On the drive in we noticed the trailhead parking lot was completely full and overflowing so we woke up around 5 AM, made breakfast and got to the trailhead around 5:45 AM so we could get a parking spot. We went a total of 12 miles, 6 down (easy peasy) and 6 up (not so easy peasy), but the views were unlike anything I have ever seen! Keep in mind when going down that Yes, you do have to go back up and that last 2 miles from the top is nothing but switchbacks and they WILL murder you.
We did not see much wildlife while we were there, but it was snowing most of the time. They warned against leaving food out because of the ravens, so we made sure to keep our food up in the car. Take some time to visit the North Rim, we only had 3 days and I wished we had much much more!
As a Ranger for the Dyrt, I get to test products from time to time. At North Rim Campground, I tested the Primus Primetech 2.3 Liter Stove Set.
Now for the past few years I have been using my MSR Pocket Rocket for all my backpacking needs, but this trip was with my husband and was more like car camping than anything, so we opted to choose a little bigger stove. Primus has many variety of stoves, but we very much liked the sound of the new Primetech stove that has a nonstick pan and wind guard. It comes in a 1.3 Liter as well, but we eat a lot…
Never having used anything by Primus, I did not quite know what to expect. I ordered directly from the Primus website and received the product within the week. The stove and parts came all packed together in a nice carrying pouch that makes it very easy handle. It is bigger than the stove I am used to and probably not the best for backpacking with, but it is great if you have some extra room to spare and a few bodies to cook for!
At first, I will tell you, I got very frustrated. I could not for the life of me figure it out. I read the instructions over and over again, doing EXACTLY what they said to do. Well…that was the problem.
The set up was nice and easy, but lighting it was the issue. The instructions say to turn the valve 2 whole turns, then use the Piezo Lighter to light. Well I can tell you, after much trial and error, it needed much more than 2 turns. I originally thought it was the lighter itself, so we tried a different lighter and failed again. Long story short, I found that that you need to turn the valve until you hear a light stream of gas then use the Piezo Lighter (could be upwards of 5 whole turns.)
Once I figured out how to light the thing, I fell in LOVE! The Primetech stove is Awesome!
Things I LOVE!! :
The whole thing packs up into itself and comes in a nice carrying case!
The gas valve makes it feel like you are cooking over your gas stove at home. You can decrease and increase the flame to you cooking needs without any effort at all!
The lid for the pot has an integrated strainer and the wind guard on the bottom works wonders!
The set comes with 2 pot, one of which has a non-stick coating that actually works! I have spent too many nights scrubbing the burned noodles out of a pot in freezing cold water as my fingers go numb….not anymore!! You can literally get a paper towel and wipe the excess food out of the pot.
This is one AMAZING stove set. We brought our old stove set on the trip just in case this one didn’t hold up to our liking, we didn’t even unpack the thing. I will be using the Primetech Primus stove for many years to come!
-Quick tip: Make sure to use a Primus fuel canister if you have one available. We originally attached a leftover MSR fuel canister we had and for some reason when connecting it the fuel leaked out a got all over my hand (it didn’t feel so good), when I attached the Primus canister later I didn’t have an issue!
My wife and I took a week long road trip through Arizona, we made no plans and no reservations. Little did we know after reaching the North Rim Campground, we would find that the camp sights are books 6+ months ahead of time. The park ranger told us about the dispersed camping many mile away, as we were getting ready to leave line, a couple walks up and explained they had reserved a corner spot which contained 2 spots, because it was the only one available that weekend. they offered the unused sight to us!!!!!
We took the offer and were Blown away by the beauty that surrounded our site, we were far from others even quite far from our helpful hosts, the hiking is stunning and the lodge there makes some great food as well as a great place to buy some souvenirs.
Fire-ring, BBQ, Water nearby, AMAZING SPACE, plenty of tree coverage from the sun, close to hiking, and within a short drive to the best sunsets Arizona has to offer
We HIGHLY recommend catching the sunset at Angel Peak!!!! but watch out for the altitude change, its quite high at 8297 feet. Our hometown is at 2800 and the hiking got the best of me…
Very beautiful campground on the north rim. Plenty of shops and trails to hit while you're here. Great views of the canyon. I believe they are only open during the spring to summer months. Only 10 percent of the annual Grand canyon visitors go to the north rim. Beautiful visitor center with very helpful park rangers. They're are quite a few trails that take you to different view points of the canyon which I will attach. If you choose to camp here ensure you reserve a spot a few months out as they usually fill up quickly. I made a reservation about 7 months in advance.
Spectacular scenery and way more intimate than the south rim.
Campsites came with picnic tables, fire pit, water nearby, and toilets. Shower and laundry near the camp store/ restaurant. Trail from my site to the north rim where I saw the most amazing sunset and views of the canyon. There is a second area to the North rim with cabins and a lodge where they put on star parties at night with folks from NASA giving fascinating talks on Mars and land rovers followed by dozens of telescope on the deck to view the cosmos.
Stayed for a single night in late June. There were severe fire restrictions on at the time so no campfires allowed. Sites were generously sized and spaced out. Lots of sites; large campground. VERY close to the Transept Canyon, a side canyon that feeds into the Grand Canyon. We will definitely visit this campground again.
VERY cool campground that is spread out through old growth pines and is within walking distance of The North Rim, which is by far the best side of the Gran Canyon! If you are lucky enough to be there during a thunderstorm, you'll get to listen to thunder roll through The Grand Canyon. :)
The Grand Canyon is one of my favorite places, and the North Rim has the view with less crowds than the South Rim. It is a longer drive, and more remote, and closes in the winter, but the peace and beauty is worth it. There are many rim view sites, and the campground is clean and neat. Flush toilets, pay showers, and a general store provide what you need. There are several small places to eat at the lodge, which is less than a mile hike or drive. The camp hosts are friendly, and the sites are wonderfully quiet at night. We have visited every year for 10 years, and plan to continue our tradition.
Amenities include shower and laundry. Quick access to little trails. Clean bathrooms. Nice tent pad. Spacious sites.