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  • Grand Canyon

    Have any of you in the troop ever been to Grand Canyon on a summer camp or just a outing? Any advice, tips you can share?
    thanks

  • #2
    My troop has visited there a couple of times - we are about 4 hours away. As far as camping look up the TenX Forest Service campground, just a few miles south of the park itself. Much cheaper than actually camping in the park, not as crowded, very comfortable area.

    Within the park itself you will find shuttle buses that take you between different points. Break your troop into small groups because there is no way you can get a dozen or more people in one group on a bus due to the heavy use of same.

    Take your own food and picnic because the prices in the park are outrageous even for water. There is a grocery but prices are up there (in the Village). The Imax theater complex in the town just south of the park has some very neat displays that are free to walk through, related to the park and Major John Wesley Powell's river run back when. The exhibit includes a recreated model of the boats his group used.

    If anyone in your group has a Golden Age passport then everyone *in their vehicle* can pass free of charge. Check the park's website for fees and free days (there are a couple each year).

    There is no way to see the park in one day, and we are talking the South Rim only here. As far as camping in the valley itself it is only by hiking down or taking a helicopter that you can access it, and it considered a high adventure trip by BSA with all the attendant physical requirements. VERY strenuous hike and people do fall (fatally).

    The Planes of Fame Museum in Valle (down the highway an hour south from the canyon) will give Scout groups a discount if they make advance registrations. Very worthwhile. Warbirds, a Ford Trimotor that once flew Canyon tours (I've seen that plane in flight once, awesome experience), experimentals, oddities and more.

    RR

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    • #3
      To piggyback onto that, I've never heard of the canyon being considered high adventure. But the idea of going down all the way to the river and back in one day is not such a good idea just based on the sheer number of people who can't do it in one day and get stuck. I've done it a few times in 1 day, down and back up, but that wasy in high school and college, so I know it's possible.

      To go down and camp in the canyon, you have to get a permit. they are available online, first come, first serve kind of thing and you'll only be able to take 6 people from your group. you may be able to get 2 permits, but the two groups can't hike and camp together.

      You could go in and do a day hike, realizing you must take enough water, even in the winter it's warmer as you go down into the canyon. and that at x hours you must turn back. figure it will take you twice as long to get out as it did to get in. so hike down 1 hour, turn around and hike back up it will take 2 hours.

      Last time we went we did camp in the park, the price wasn't too horrible. and we awoke to snow, because it was november we were cold but were prepared. boys hiked for 2 hours down and 4 hours back up and were suitably tired and in awe of the canyon itself.

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      • #4
        I did my first 50 miler as a scout in the Grand Canyon. About six or seven days on the trail. Rim-rim-rim...started at the south rim, hiked along the bottom for awhile, up the north rim, back down, and then up south rim again. About 56 miles total.

        Beautiful. And absolutely exhausting! Very challenging hike. Glad we went. Super glad when it was over!

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        • #5
          When I was naught but a lad, the troop of my youth went to the Grand Canyon, and we were just west of O'Hare field in Chicago. It was a great experience, I will be putting up a picture on the Facebook page. We went by rail and camped overnight in the Bright Angel Campground, which is next to Phantom Ranch on the Canyon Floor. Sat in Bright Angel Creek and let the water soak us good. We did the mules, rode horses and generally had a great time

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          • #6
            When I was naught but a lad, the troop of my youth went to the Grand Canyon, and we were just west of O'Hare field in Chicago. It was a great experience, I will be putting up a picture on the Facebook page. We went by rail and camped overnight in the Bright Angel Campground, which is next to Phantom Ranch on the Canyon Floor. Sat in Bright Angel Creek and let the water soak us good. We did the mules, rode horses and generally had a great time

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            • #7
              OGE, thanks for sharing that! On our trip, after splashing about in the aforementioned Bright Angel Creek, I was walking along the bank and nearly stepped on a coral snake. I backed away slowly, called my buddies, returned to look but the snake was gone.

              Also enjoyed the visual passage of geologic time...hiking down the south rim, the fine powered dust on the trail rose up and coated your legs different colors every so often.

              Can't forget Mule/Human Courtesy 101: if hikers encounter a mule train, the hikers take the outside of trail and stand still while the mules pass, even if you are standing on the edge of a killer drop off. Every so often a mule would snort, swish his tail your face, or jump around a bit. "Remain calm, all is well...."(This message has been edited by desertrat77)

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