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Grand Canyon National Park, ARIZONA
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Beautiful!

Lots of deer and very clean.  Gets very cold at night and early morning.

Bathrooms are clean.

Great camping location for couples and families.

Wooded sites

I stayed here for 2 nights in October, during that time it was very cold in the Grand Canyon. This campground didn’t have many people staying in it, so it was very quiet. The bathrooms were close by and there was a laundry facility. There were large deer everywhere.

Worth the walk

This campground is placed between several waterfalls and along a river in the bottom of the Grand Canyon. The 10 mile hike makes this a campsite that you should stay at for a few days.

WOWZA!

This. Place. Breathtakingly beautiful. Obviously the canyon stole the show, but Mather Park was a treat as well. It was jam packed with tourists, but still amazing! I loved being close to the general store and hotel, complete with a restaurant, coffee shop and cafeteria hall! We decided to go on a walk the next morning to view the sunrise and it only took us about 15 minutes from our campsite! Hiking down and back up the South Kaibab trail was a treat for the both of us as we got engaged near mid-point! The hike down was easy, but going back up was tough! Be sure to pack lots of water and carry minimally, and abide by the signs. The views are incredible and the park staff were all very nice! The weather during March was a bit nippy at night inside the tent, but during the day it warmed up. We can’t wait to go back and experience Horseshoe Bend!

Absolutely Stunning and Beautiful but...

All the Falls and River are absolutely breathtaking, beautiful and amazing. But other than that, we had a few concerns with the whole area.

None of the trails are marked, miles of hiking, lots of side trails your asked not to hike on, yet NONE of the trails are marked. Most of the falls are not marked either. No signs, no trail markers, no idea how far you've gone or have to go. It can be frustrating unless your ready to go on adventure hikes not knowing where your at/going.

Even the drinking water in camp is not marked as such, instead its referred to as a Spring, with a PVC pipe coming out of a rock on the side of the mountain. So filter or not? Some do, some dont. But dont expect signs or any info around to help you decide.

Trash was pretty prevalent along the trail in, through town, and in camp. Which was sad, but not all from hikers and campers.

Most of the tribes people we interacted with, seemed unhappy to have guests, tourists, and customers. We did not even receive a smile at the Welcome Center.

Walking through town to camp you are surrounded with run down houses, yards filled with trash and debris, and a general unkempt look all around. Doesnt go well with the idea of being in the natural beauty of the Grand Canyon, or the ideal of this being a Native American Cultural Center and historical area. They have been extremely Americanized. It was great to see, but highly doubt we will go back.

Cozy but...

The campsite was cozy but you have to pay $2 in quarters for a "18min" shower which was more like 10mins. There was quite a bit of trash around the site. We picked up and threw away what we could. We camped there on a Monday then backpacked in the grand canyon and came back to Mather on thursday. Not very quite but great if you're wanting a cheap in the park option for sleeping.

No easy feat to get a reservation, but persistence pays off!

If you win the lottery, this is the place to stay!

Let me clarify. This place is amazing, but the only way to get here it by winning a random lottery for a room (link is HERE). It's such a popular location (for incredibly good reason), that you have to enter a lottery, pick some dates, and cross your fingers. All 3 adults in our group entered, and one of us was picked. Hip hip hooray!

It's located on Bright Angel Creek, just a little bit from the Colorado River. In order to get to Phantom Ranch, you have to be insane enough to want to travel down inside the earth about a mile (most people call this the Grand Canyon), in the sun, covered in red dirt, with your backpack, and enough salty snacks and water to feed an elephant (or you can rent a ride on the mules) That said, if you have the drive and insanity and muscles to get you there, the reward is awesome lemonade, night time ranger talks, conversations with mules (because you might just be that tired at the end of the night), unbelievable experiences meeting other fellow hikers, and delicious comfort food.

Okay, now you can't possibly expect the Ritz when you get here. It's not about that. It's not even close, but it's 5 star in a totally different way. Keep in mind, that this Ranch has been here since the early 1920's. And supplies were either local to the area at the bottom, or brought by mule. So it's not fancy.

What to expect: There are a few ways to stay at Phantom Ranch. First are dorms. There are about 10 bunks per dorm, and it's women and men. Women in one, men in the other. Each dorm has a toilet with a door (modern plumbing) and a shower with hot water. There is also a sink. Each person claims a bunk and that's theirs for their stay. The other way is to rent a cabin. More expensive, but more private. If you rent the cabin, you and yours are the only ones sharing it. Because it's "out of the way", not all the modern conveniences work all the time. So expect it to be a little rustic, but it's all part of the experience. The cabins and dorms have air and heat, so it's a more comfortable experience than camping in a tent.

There is potable water scattered around, a few composting toilets if you are away from your cabin, picnic tables, two outdoor amphitheaters (normally a daytime ranger program at one, and a night program at the other). Inside the canteen you can purchase drinks (alcoholic and non), hiking essentials (toothbrush, sunscreen, salve, etc) and a selection of souvenirs. They even have a little library of books to read, and games that you can borrow and play.

There are some meals available, but you need to order them in advance (or check with them each day to see if they have enough for you to order it). The two evening meals are beef stew and steak. Not cheap, but so worth it! They come with fixings like cornbread, veggies and such, and always dessert. You can also order a veggie option. Breakfast is family style (as is dinner) and was pancakes, bacon, eggs etc when we were there. Coffee and juice too. There aren't many options, but think about it…all the groceries have to be delivered by mule. Make sense? Breakfast is offered at 2 different times (your choice) so you can get hiking early, if you want. Dinner is at different times, too, depending on what you order.

While you are there, you can buy a postcard and have it mailed from the Ranch, by mule! Cool little way to tell your loved ones "look what I did!".

So much to say about this "little piece of wonderful"! You really just have to see it for yourself!

NOTE: please read up on traveling to the bottom of the canyon before you go. Make wise choices about what time of year you want to travel. It was April when we went, and although it was about 50 degrees at the South Rim, it was close to 90 degrees at the bottom. In the summer, they said it can get to about 120 degrees in the shade. So please plan accordingly for snacks, water, travel, clothing choices and temperature

Hard to reach, and you have to have a permit, but amazing!

We didn't have the pleasure of staying at Bright Angel Campground, because we had bunks a Phantom Ranch, but what an amazing place to stay! At the bottom of the canyon, how many people get to say they've been there?

It's hard to get there, since you have to hike over a mile down into the earth to find it, but if you've reserved your spot in advance, it's an amazing opportunity! You MUST have a permit to stay at this campground, and it takes months to get one, so please plan in advance.

You can not hike down and get a spot at the campground. You have to have a permit.

Cost: $10 for the permit and $8 per person with 30 sites for small groups (1 to 2 tents) and 2 spots for larger groups (up to 7 tents, I think)

Once you have a permit, and arrive at the campground, it is first come first serve to pick a spot.

The sites aren't terribly private, but they are incredibly unique. Each features a spot on the water, or just across the trail from the water, and it's on the Bright Angel Creek, just a half mile from the Little Colorado River. Each site also had a lock box (like a cooler with latches) for food to keep it from the ravenous, and none to shy, squirrels, as well as a metal "T" post for hanging your packs and shoes. NOTE: Keep your packs UNZIPPED so that the squirrels don't chew holes into them, if they manage to pull circus stunts and find them on the poles. The cool part? Those poles are part of the old telephone line/system in the canyon! Great little piece of history being repurposed!

I assume that everyone at the bottom has the stamina and gumption to get there, so they respect everyone else that did too. And those that were crazy enough to try, without athletic ability, have a newfound insane appreciation for what it takes to do it at all, and respects everyone even more, so privacy at the campsites isn't an issue. It's a privilege to be there at all.

There are bathrooms, potable water, emergency phone, boat beach for soaking tired feet in icy water, ranger station and lots of good company. I highly recommend it, if you are just crazy enough to try. You won't regret the memories!

Quiet and flat

It seems like the campground might be crowded, and you can see your neighbors in most sites, but there are trees and some privacy. Deer wander through, too, which is fun. There and sidewalks for the children to ride bikes and scooters. It can be a bit of a walk to reach the shuttle, but it’s worth the effort to avoid parking.

Great location

April was pretty cold at the Grand Canyon and we weren’t super prepared to have snow but it was a great location. Trails in the canyon and around the rim we’re close. There was a grocery store in the park and not too far from the campground. The facilities were very well kept. The camp spots were pretty open and were lacking in privacy but that’s not abnormal for a national park.

Right outside the gates of Grand Canyon National Park!
  • Great boondocking campground 5 miles from the entrance of Grand Canyon National Park! First come first serve.
  • Super convenient to the town of Tasayan for supplies and food.
  • A great alternative if you couldn't get reservations for campgrounds in the area. It's hard to believe this place is FREE!
  • North of the Tusayan Ranger District and under a mile from the South Entrance Ranger Station. Walking distance from lots of things
  • You can see the campgrounds from the main highway so it can get a little noisy and headlights can be a little distracting in the evenings
  • It's a dirt road getting in and can be super muddy during wetter seasons. A lot of people have gotten stuck in the mud. 4 wheel drive is highly recommended.
  • Because it was so muddy when we were here, it was a little difficult finding a flat/dry/level spot to pitch a tent. This place is ideal for RV/trailer camping
  • Warning: Lots of generators running throughout the evening. Bring earbuds
  • Fires are allowed and some sites have firepits. Lots of found wood lying around that can be used as well.
  • There are plenty of areas to camp (definitely can accommodate at least 20 different groups) and you'll even have space to spread your legs. 
  • There are lots of trees in the area so I'd imagine there'd be nice shade during hotter weather.
  • Not as secluded as other boondock sites we've been to, but you can't beat the close proximity to the Park.
  • No showers, toilets, running water.
  • Practice LNT and pack in pack out. This place had some trash lying around and you can definitely tell it's heavily used. Help pick up trash if you see any and leave the place better than you found it.
  • Great cell service with AT&T

We absolutely LOVED camping here. We were able to enter Grand Canyon National Park super early before the crowds and enjoy the views uninterrrupted. This is such a great spot to camp for anyone on a budget who is just looking for a place to rest their head. We couldn't believe how close this was to the Park and that it was completely free. It's also quite beautiful if you can get past the mud and loud humming of generators. If you're in an RV, this place is the dream. We woke up the next morning to the entire campground covered in snow. It was absolutely stunning! HIGHLY RECOMMEND!

Beautiful

A few points to consider in addition to the other reviews:

  1. Alcohol is not allowed on the land/reservation. Please respect this. If it is found, you will likely be fined & banned. This has been made clear for years.
  2. The official Havasupai website has all the information you need to book, plan, and have a successful vacation.
  3. 2019 many things have changed. Please see their official website to avoid issues.
  4. All trash must be carried out, even if you have employed a donkey, they can not carry it. Please plan accordingly.
  5. Have fun!!!
Amazing

Good hike, cheeted and had the mules carry our stuff. Amazing vews.

South rim Grand Canyon trip

Really close campsite to the Grand Canyon. Nice clean restrooms. We went in November so it was cold(low 10’s and only up to mid 20’s during day! So be prepared. Sites had table and fire pit. And easy access roads to sides

Close but crowded

A large campground in the middle of the park. Pine loop is generator free so it was quieter than the rest. There are no quick walks to the rim from the camp but there is a bus system that can take you there. November was a quieter time but still fairly busy.

Can't get a Grand Canyon Permit, try the Kaibab National Forest

Sometimes getting a permit into the Grand Canyon is impossible. I have applied and been turned down. But don't be discouraged. There are some awesome trails and campsites in the Kaibab National Forest. Crazy Jug is probably the most famous but if you have all wheel drive or an off road Bike, you can get almost any where in the forest for a great adventure.

make sure you have a road map. There are hundreds of back roads that act as a maze so don't get lost :)

Great for larger RV’s

This is a great campground in the Grand Canyon National Park it is close to the village, you can bike and hike fom this location. There is also a bus stop at the entrance to this campground that will take you all around the canyon to see all of the sites. All of the spots are pull through and have water electricity sewer and cable. The cell service is ok depending on where you are at. There are a lot of people from other countries that stay at this campground so you meet a lot of nice people. The campground is very close to the rim and many amenities. There is also elk that will come through and graze. We stayed for seven days in August during the rainy season very pleasant.

Clean and simple

We stayed at this campground for two nights in September. Checking in was easy, informative and we also got a detailed map of the campground. Bathroom and drinking water is close by and every bathroom has an outdoor sink for washing dishes and animal proof trash cans. Campsites are nice, clean and big, every one of them has a picnic table and designated campfire. There is a campsite host on site 24/7. We had a nice, quet stay at this campground, and if you're lucky you'll see deer/elk early in the morning around your tent eating breakfast :)

Cozy, close to everything

This is a great place to camp on the south rim! Walk to Navajo point snack bar/camp store and watchtower! Tent camp sites have shade and a picnic table. Go catch sunset at the tower! But get there before 6! Very quiet campground off tourist path just far enough out of high traffic areas. Highly recommend!

Very nice and plenty of space

This campground is a great place to stay for cheap if you want to camp out near the Grand Canyon. It was only 20ish minutes from the canyon and it was a great place to camp out with a few friends.

Last minute cancellation got us into the park RV spot.

Book ahead of time..maybe months before you go.

Mather Grand Canyon sept 2018

Grand Canyon is a professional setup. They know how to do things, while this is the most popular park in the US, they are very organized. Yes, we had to make reservations and we were camping in a tent 3 nights and had to change campsites each night. Plenty of bathrooms with running water/flush toilets, showers are in a central location close to the check in site, and showers were $2.00 for 8 minutes. Shuttles arrive frequently to take you where you need to go, or the marketplace is a short walk. We got our water refilled at the marketplace for free. Mather is a tent campground, RVs are at a separate site.

Camping in the Ponderosa’s

clean campground but can be noisey

Crowded but worth it

This hike is on most peoples bucket list and for good reason. The falls and surrounding areas are incredible. The big thing to note about Havasu falls and the campground are they do not ever accept walk ins. You must book ahead of time! Reservations open on February 1st and sell out that same day. New this year, you can use their online booking site to secure a spot. It is both stressful and exciting. Once you have a spot secured you can begin dreaming about the blue waters.

The hike into the campground is 10 miles each way. Not so much difficult but hot and crowded. I would recommended leaving very early in the morning. The hike to the village is 9 miles where you will check in and then continue an extra mile to the campground. Once to the spots, the campground itself spans about 1 mile. Selecting a good spot is key, there are shaded spots as well as spots that are entirely in the sun (Temps get into the 100's in the summer). There are no designated spots but you will see open areas with picnic tables, that will let you know. You will end up camping on top of people in most spots as well. They allow 300 permits per day down there. *Note there are no fires allowed ever in this campground.

If you decide to stay at the end of the grounds you will be close to Mooney falls but will have to walk an extra 2 miles a day to get to Havasu falls and back plus add an extra mile to your hike out. The upside to staying at the ends of the grounds are less people so it is quieter. There is a natural water spring where you can collect water (some filter this, we did not and felt great!), it is located towards the beginning of the campground. Restrooms are are the beginning and the end, so think about that when picking a spot. Close is easy to access but you may smell it sometime. Also they run out of TP often, bring some.

Overall, amazing area and hike. The crowds never seemed to crazy. If you really need you can take a helicopter out from the village to the parking lot and also have pack mules bring your bags out (The latter is not recommended as the mules seem exhausted and overworked, they haul bags all day everyday)

Hard to Get reservations, But Worth it!!!

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.

Facilities:

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…

Vast Views

A little on the pricy side of campgrounds, but well worth it. Shuttle service running to the Grand Canyon from the campground is great and location could not be better. Great modern facilities.

not bad

it’s not close to much, but there is some running water you can cool off in and refill water. just make sure you filter it. when we were there they didn’t have running water to just fill up from. very hot on the way to this camp site as there is not much cover on the trail.

great camp site

it’s right next to the river so it’s easy go take a dip and cool off. running water in front of the store and the store serves beer and food. can’t beat that when hiking for days.

Nice

Great hosts

Nice campground close to rim

Decent campground, I stayed here before hiking to Bright Angel Campground the next day.

It is a very large campground but the sites are well spaced.  Very close to the canyon, great place to stay regardless of your plans at the park.