grand canyon

Old Aug 15th, 2011, 07:06 PM
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grand canyon

Hi everyone.
I am planning a trip from the east cost to grand canyon area for the first time. there is 5 of us, no kids and we are not proffesional hikers. let me know what you think of this 7-8 nights plan.
fly to vegas, drive to zion for 2 night ,bryce for 1 night, lake powell for 2 nights, grand can south rim for 2 night, drive to sedona the next day and then back to vegas the same day or stay the night in sedona. is lake powell worth staying for 2 nights? should i stay in sedona? i am not planning to stay long in vegas and have a whole week to spend.
thank you for your responses.
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Old Aug 15th, 2011, 07:55 PM
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Unless you are doing something on Lake Powell (tour to Rainbow Bridge, renting a boat, etc) or doing a flat-water raft trip below the dam it would make sense to spend one night there and one night in Sedona. This will still let you visit Antelope Canyon and see the other main sights near Page.

You could also just stay one night at the south rim GC if you'd rather stay 2 nights at Page. If you're not hiking much you can hit the highlights and catch a sunrise and sunset with just one overnight at the GC. Though I would recommend the hike into the Canyon on Kaibab to Cedar Ridge, about 1.5 miles each way. This isn't overly difficult and offers great views you won't get from the rim.

Just saying it's a very long day to start at Grand Canyon, then to Sedona for just a quick look, then to Vegas ... I'd either skip Sedona if staying 2 nights at both LP or GC, or cut one night at LP or GC so I could relax for a night in Sedona before driving to Vegas.
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Old Aug 16th, 2011, 02:48 AM
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I think there's a big difference between being a non-professional hiker and an absolutely non-hiker.

Sedona itself is a little town with t-shirt stores and restaurants that close at 9PM.

One or two very short hikes into the red rocks would be amazing.

Two I would suggest are Boynton Canyon Vista (not the full Boynton canyon hike but the Vista cutoff) and walk in the area of Bell Rock.

In Zion I would suggest one or two of Riverside Walk, Emerald Pools or maybe Canyon Overlook on the way out of Zion towards Bryce.

For Bryce I would suggest a very early morning at Bryce Point to see a spectacular sunrise and then later hike down Navajo Loop and back up Queens Garden. This will give you a feel for the Bryce hoodoos.

For Grand Canyon you can walk along the rim for a while.
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Old Aug 16th, 2011, 02:58 AM
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If you don't want to hike down at Bryce, the horse ride there is very good too. I would work in a visit to Hoover Dam.
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Old Aug 16th, 2011, 06:03 AM
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It sounds like a lot of driving! I would leave out Lake Powell, my least favorite of the places you mention, but not miss Sedona. It is a very touristy town, but for good reason: the rock formations that surround it are stunning. Of the hikes we've done there, Boynton Canyon was my favorite.

Bryce is beautiful in a very different way from Sedona. I'm glad we saw it,(and hiked, very easy hiking) but we've never felt compelled to return. Zion and the Grand Canyon though, we've returned to multiple times. We really enjoy hiking, but are far from professional hikers either. I'll add another hike to those Myer mentioned for Zion--Hidden Canyon. Riverside is just a stroll. You can do both that and Emerald Pools in a day.

Definitely do a little hike in the Grand Canyon. Going down completely changes your perspective of its depth and vastness. The Bright Angel trail is perhaps the best and there are any number of "destinations" on the trail you can set for yourselves, before you turn around. The first rest stop might be one, or if you are more ambitious, Indian Gardens. We've never had time to go to the bottom and would love to some day, but each of these hikes has been very satisfying, given us a good feel for the canyon, and a sense of accomplishment. Our longest day hike was to Plateau Point, where we could at last catch a glimpse of the Colorado below.

Very definitely try to stay WITHIN the park at the Grand Canyon. Of the places we've stayed, our favorite has been one of the rustic Bright Angel cabins. We have stayed both within the park at Zion, and outside as well, and after experiencing night and early morning in the park, that's the only way I would do it now. Park accommodations are not luxurious by any means, but they are simple, clean, and relatively inexpensive. We could not get into park accommodations at Bryce--you need to make those reservations (for all park lodging) as soon as your travel times are firm.

Have fun! If you enjoy this trip even a fraction as much as we did, this won't be your first and last!
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Old Aug 17th, 2011, 07:16 PM
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Thank you all.I have lots of studying to do.The only thing i have reserved is the 2 nights inside the park in GC.The trip is on mid oct and i will let you all know how it went.

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Old Aug 17th, 2011, 08:11 PM
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I think your itinerary is perfect. I love Lake Powell and it is well worth the stop, not to mention it's right on the way from Bryce to the S. Rim of the Grand Canyon.

There's a lot to do at Lake Powell. The all day boat trip on the Lake that takes you to Rainbow Bridge National Monument. The half day float trip on the Colorado River is scenic and fun. The 3/4 mile hike to Horseshoe Bend is a must if you do the Colorado River float trip and then there are the Upper and Lower Antelope Slot Canyons. You can go swimming in Lake Powell and rent water crafts. You can just sit at Wahweap Marina and enjoy the view!! You don't need two nights unless you plan either the boat or float tours.

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