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Wild River Explorer Expedition

Grand Canyon

This is the most popular loop hike in the Grand Canyon, and a fantastic introduction to life below the rim.  Descend into the canyon among some of the most breathtaking panoramic views possible, and experience the most extreme environs found in this desert landscape.  Enjoy two nights at the popular Bright Angel Campground near Phantom Ranch, swim in the Colorado river, explore hidden waterfalls on a short day hike, or just relax in the peaceful atmosphere from beneath a shady cottonwood tree.

This hike descends seven miles down stunning ridge lines to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.  During the descent, you will be exposed to the classic views through the heart of the Grand Canyon that made this trail famous.  This trail is a great introduction to the hot, dry conditions experienced on many trails throughout the Grand Canyon.  No water is available, and shade is a rare commodity, so be ready to carry all the water you will need for this portion of the hike, 4-liters is a reasonable amount.  However, the hot, dry conditions will seem like only a distant memory when we reach our first camp at Phantom Ranch.  Phantom Ranch is the perfect salve for a weary hiker.  Here, you can enjoy an ice-cold beverage and a juicy steak in the “cantina,” take a quick dip in the refreshing Colorado River, soak your feet in Phantom Creek, which meanders through the campground, enjoy a Park Ranger presentation in the evening, and marvel at the entertaining antics of bighorn sheep and ring-tail cats.  In fact, there is so much to see and do at Phantom Ranch, that you may want to schedule an extra day here, to fully enjoy life at the bottom of the Grand Canyon and prepare for the long hike back out.

Our route out of the canyon is more gentle than the descent and follows along the banks of Garden Creek.  The lush riparian habitat offers ample shade and plenty of opportunities to cool off; a welcome contrast to the heat and exposure experienced the first day.  During the first five miles of the trail, we hike past waterfalls, wild-flowers, hidden cliff-dwellings, and narrow gorges, before reaching the shady spring at Indian Gardens.  A final five mile hike to the rim rewards you with unsurpassed views of the canyon.


Length: 3-5 days

Distance: 17 miles

Group size: 2-5 (larger groups permitted by special request)

Season: year-round

*Special Add On* Besides ice-cold beverages, Phantom Ranch also serves delicious hot meals by reservation only.  Add $35 per person.  (Based on availability).

*Special Add On* Make your hike out of the canyon a little easier by adding an additional day.  We'll reward you with a stunning sunset dinner overlooking the river.  Add $290 per person.

The Wild River Explorer Expedition includes:

  • A private backcountry expedition - no additional participants

  • Two guides for maximum safety and the lightest backpacks.

  • Round Trip transportation from your hotel in Flagstaff, Williams or the South Rim Area.

  • Top of the line backcountry gear (packs, tents, sleeping bags, hiking poles).  Everything but your own personal items.

  • All necessary permits.

  • All Backcountry Meals

Private Expedition Prices

2 hikers $1,190 per person

3 hikers $1,090 per person

4 hikers $990 per person

Steak or Veggie Dinner at Phantom $35 per person

Additional Day with Special Sunset Dinner $290 per person.

Have more questions?  Call us today at 1-800-957-4557.

Our reservation agents are ready to answer your questions.

All Available Tours

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Grand Canyon Tour

Grand Canyon Sunset Tour

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Intermediate Hiking

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Colorado River Rafting

Whitewater Rafting

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Hopi Tour

Sedona Tour

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Toll Free: 1-800-957-4557     Local & International Telephone:    1-928-814-2277

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