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Old 06-05-2014, 10:34 PM   #1
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Grand Canyon Trip Pointers

My wife, soon to be 14-year old twin daughters and I are planning a trip the second week of July from MI to see the Grand Canyon. Our trip, in part, will consist of spending three to four days in the Grand Canyon area. We plan on having a three week trip all together. Because of the size of our motor home (45' Essex) we wouldn't be seeking camping sites in the State and/or national parks.
I would like to hear from folks who may have experienced such a trip. We will be towing a vehicle behind our motor home. Any thoughts and/or suggestions on campsites that could accommodate us as well as things to see would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:44 PM   #2
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Trailer Village inside the park at Grand Canyon has large FHU sites. I believe they will accommodate any size coach. Shuttle buses run from the campground about every 15 minutes. Good chance they are booked up

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Old 06-05-2014, 11:11 PM   #3
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I had some friends from WV that went there and they said "it was raining, you couldn't see 200 feet".
They stayed 15 mins and left.

I couldn't believe they didn't stick around a little while to see if the sky would clear up .
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:24 PM   #4
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Was there last year, amazing trip 30 days with the family in July.

Campground for large rv is reserved way in advance.

I am only 32 feet long without towing, which makes it that I can basically go anywhere. We dry camped in gran canyon. Even the 5 of us we did not required any hook ups and the generator never ran.

Have fun... Go to monument valley also if you can
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:25 PM   #5
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IRV2 National was in Williams, AZ in 2010. The location was the Trackside RV Park. We all caught the train to the canyon. It was a great experience for us and our then 13 year old granddaughter.
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Old 06-06-2014, 02:28 AM   #6
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IRV2 National was in Williams, AZ in 2010. The location was the Trackside RV Park. We all caught the train to the canyon. It was a great experience for us and our then 13 year old granddaughter.
I second this. We live in the southwest and make a point out of stopping in Williams, AZ every trip we take. Grand Canyon Railway RV park is walking distance to town (think cowboy town + 50s retro). The train station is right there for a day trip up north to the Grand Canyon. To save money, it is only an hour drive At this particular park, you also get access to the hotel pool, gym and other amenities. If you want to go about 10 miles up the road, you might want to visit bearizona. It is a drive through zoo that I went through with my big diesel pusher comfortably. Get to the center and walk around the zoo. Kids loved it.
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Old 06-06-2014, 08:58 AM   #7
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We also stayed in Williams, AZ for our trip to the Grand Canyon. That was 2 to 3 years ago and it was a nice place then.

You may want to think about getting the girls the Passports - Passport to Your National ParksŪ Program - it would give them something extra to do and if you get other national or federal parks they can look for them there too. The Grand Canyon has 7 I think to find. Here is the site for them if you need help - eParks.com: Passport Cancellation Locations - eParks - Where your purchase supports America's National Parks. - there is a "secret" one there that is not on the lists, lol. It's at Hermit's Rest.
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Old 06-06-2014, 08:55 PM   #8
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Thanks, all!

Some great feedback! I appreciate everyone's input.
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Old 06-06-2014, 09:21 PM   #9
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At Christmas time the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel (which is walking distance across the street from the campground) offers "The Polar Express" where the kids and adults all ride the train in their pajamas and stop off to see Santa!! Those kids were glowing they were so excited!! Also, the Hotel has a fabulous buffett! They serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You can take the train to the Grand Canyon but the train goes VERY slow so it does eat up a lot of the day just getting to the GC. The train did have some fun "old west" type entertainment that was enjoyable.
One block over from the campground across from the train station is the road that runs through town Route66! There are some great little shops littered along there as well as The Red Garter Inn which origanally was a bordello in the 1800's. Now it is a cafe but the owner loves to tell stories about the town of Williams, Arizona. The whole town is very tourist friendly and welcoming!!
Like the previous poster said, Bearazona is a great drive through animal park but if you pass Bearazona and drive another 5 or so miles, on the left is Planes of Fame which is a privately owned aviation museum. Right next door to that is Bedrock City which is a campground/amusement stop with a recreation of Bedrock that you can walk through. I sat in Fred Flintstones living room!! It is cheeky, but brings back a lot of memories!
Enjoy your trip!
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Old 06-06-2014, 09:32 PM   #10
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The road less traveled

Quote:
Originally Posted by srh View Post

I would like to hear from folks who may have experienced such a trip. We will be towing a vehicle behind our motor home. Any thoughts and/or suggestions on campsites that could accommodate us as well as things to see would be greatly appreciated.
We enjoyed one of the very most memorable days of our lives on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.

We stayed at Kaibab CampeRVillage (Kaibab Camper Village | Grand Canyon North Rim camping for RVs, trailers, tents, cabin room at Jacob Lake, Arizona) in Jacob Lake, AZ. We were in a 41' motorhome towing and had no difficulty in an out.

We enjoyed the sunrise at Point Imperial, had breakfast at the North Rim Lodge and sunset at Bright Angel Point.

Check the sunrise/sunset tables; plan on being on site by 30 minutes prior. You'll quickly discover that you've got to be up really, really early to make the sunrise. It IS worth the effort. One of the highlights of our day was the 3:15 a.m. departure from our campsite. OK, 'highlights' is an intentional pun. The Kaibab campground is somewhat remote and absolutely PITCH BLACK DARK at 3:15 a.m. Slow down, stop and LOOK UP. The combination of darkness, elevation (8,300') and clear air will reward you with a sky view that is difficult to match. Enjoy that view, then head for Point Imperial.

The benefit of Point Imperial is that you have a wonderful view of the sunrise illuminating the wall of the South Rim. After you've enjoyed the sunrise, take a drive to the Lodge on the North Rim for breakfast. It'll take you about 45 minutes to make that drive. The huge benefit of that is that the folks staying at the lodge will have already viewed the sunrise and finished their breakfast BEFORE you arrive...you'll be able to walk right in and have a seat next to the window. Enjoy your leisurely buffet breakfast without the usual sunrise crowd (you WILL be able to get a window seat).

We went back to our motorhome after breakfast for a little nap and relaxed until we drove back to the North Rim Lodge to enjoy a slow paced afternoon, grab a beer from the bar, put your feet up on the rock ledge for a while. Enjoy a late lunch/early dinner (you'll still be stuffed from the breakfast buffet). Take a leisurely stroll down to Bright Angel Point to enjoy the sunset.

Be careful on your drives! There are lots of deer.

We've always enjoyed the North Rim more than the South Rim. Others have a preference for the South Rim.

Take care,
Stu
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Old 06-06-2014, 11:45 PM   #11
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We enjoy the North Rim, too, because of it's quietness and less people. However, for a first time visit I would recommend the South Rim. There are some nice easy walks along the top of the Rim, the free shuttle bus is great in that you can get on and off wherever, there are more restaurants and gift shops and many more viewpoints. Along with this are many, many more people and vehicles.

Definitely walk down the Bright Angel Trail if only for 1/8 mile or so. (Remember, walking up is difficult.) It will give you a whole different perspective of the canyon.

You might want to give Trailer Village RV in the park itself a call to see if you would fit. It's an ideal place to stay. Williams is an hour away and the drive is flat and boring. Have a good trip.
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Old 06-06-2014, 11:54 PM   #12
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We live in Arizona and Williams is a favorite destination. Before we had our toad set up we would just rent a car from I-40 Fleet rental in Williams. They'll have your car waiting for you at the RV Park when you arrive. Nice people and reasonably priced. It should be cheaper than the four train tickets and will give you some flexibility to do other things in the area for a couple days.

Bearizona is pretty cool, but at 14 you'll have to decide if it will still be in your girls interest level. Our 8 year old grandson loved it, the 15 year old much less so.
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:13 AM   #13
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At Christmas time the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel (which is walking distance across the street from the campground) offers "The Polar Express" where the kids and adults all ride the train in their pajamas and stop off to see Santa!! Those kids were glowing they were so excited!! Also, the Hotel has a fabulous buffett! They serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You can take the train to the Grand Canyon but the train goes VERY slow so it does eat up a lot of the day just getting to the GC. The train did have some fun "old west" type entertainment that was enjoyable.
One block over from the campground across from the train station is the road that runs through town Route66! There are some great little shops littered along there as well as The Red Garter Inn which origanally was a bordello in the 1800's. Now it is a cafe but the owner loves to tell stories about the town of Williams, Arizona. The whole town is very tourist friendly and welcoming!!
Like the previous poster said, Bearazona is a great drive through animal park but if you pass Bearazona and drive another 5 or so miles, on the left is Planes of Fame which is a privately owned aviation museum. Right next door to that is Bedrock City which is a campground/amusement stop with a recreation of Bedrock that you can walk through. I sat in Fred Flintstones living room!! It is cheeky, but brings back a lot of memories!
Enjoy your trip!
Thanks, great ideas!
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:22 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by 777 Driver View Post
We enjoyed one of the very most memorable days of our lives on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.

We stayed at Kaibab CampeRVillage (Kaibab Camper Village | Grand Canyon North Rim camping for RVs, trailers, tents, cabin room at Jacob Lake, Arizona) in Jacob Lake, AZ. We were in a 41' motorhome towing and had no difficulty in an out.

We enjoyed the sunrise at Point Imperial, had breakfast at the North Rim Lodge and sunset at Bright Angel Point.

Check the sunrise/sunset tables; plan on being on site by 30 minutes prior. You'll quickly discover that you've got to be up really, really early to make the sunrise. It IS worth the effort. One of the highlights of our day was the 3:15 a.m. departure from our campsite. OK, 'highlights' is an intentional pun. The Kaibab campground is somewhat remote and absolutely PITCH BLACK DARK at 3:15 a.m. Slow down, stop and LOOK UP. The combination of darkness, elevation (8,300') and clear air will reward you with a sky view that is difficult to match. Enjoy that view, then head for Point Imperial.

The benefit of Point Imperial is that you have a wonderful view of the sunrise illuminating the wall of the South Rim. After you've enjoyed the sunrise, take a drive to the Lodge on the North Rim for breakfast. It'll take you about 45 minutes to make that drive. The huge benefit of that is that the folks staying at the lodge will have already viewed the sunrise and finished their breakfast BEFORE you arrive...you'll be able to walk right in and have a seat next to the window. Enjoy your leisurely buffet breakfast without the usual sunrise crowd (you WILL be able to get a window seat).

We went back to our motorhome after breakfast for a little nap and relaxed until we drove back to the North Rim Lodge to enjoy a slow paced afternoon, grab a beer from the bar, put your feet up on the rock ledge for a while. Enjoy a late lunch/early dinner (you'll still be stuffed from the breakfast buffet). Take a leisurely stroll down to Bright Angel Point to enjoy the sunset.

Be careful on your drives! There are lots of deer.

We've always enjoyed the North Rim more than the South Rim. Others have a preference for the South Rim.

Take care,
Stu
Stu: Thanks, your thoughts and the link are very helpful!
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