Winter Hiking and Backpacking in Grand Canyon: Rim to Rim

Winter Hiking and Backpacking in Grand Canyon: Rim to Rim

From $ 3,440 AUD


Hike the Grand Canyon’s most famous trails, see both rims in winter and experience diverse micro-climates on an epic six-day hiking adventure. This trip takes you down the South Kaibab Trail, which has arguably the best views in the Grand Canyon, up the North Kaibab Trail to the North Rim and back to the South Rim via the spectacular Bright Angel Trail. Starting and finishing on the South Rim, you’ll see waterfalls, Native American ruins, box canyons and more – it’s an incredible adventure. Sleep under the stars, see all the best sights and take in spectacular Grand Canyon views without the crowds on this very special small group hiking trip.

Trip Name
Winter Hiking and Backpacking in Grand Canyon: Rim to Rim
Last Updated
  • During winter at the Grand Canyon, there are less tourists and snow regularly dusts the ground and the dramatic canyon valleys and peaks, creating a spectacular sight.
  • See both the South Rim and the less-visited North Rim of the Grand Canyon and cross the Colorado River near Phantom Ranch.
  • Soak up the pristine natural surroundings in camping spots that put you right in the heart of stunning wilderness areas with top-of-the-line tents and all your camping gear provided.
  • Enjoy freshly prepared, delicious backcountry dinners prepared by your leader and admire sparkling stars overhead if the weather is clear.


ITINERARY CHANGES Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It's important that you review this information prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays, political unrest or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in-country. Your group leader or local representative will keep you up to date with any such changes once your trip is underway. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance fees only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and maybe on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your group leader or local representative know you are interested at the Welcome Meeting and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high-risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and group leader or local representative are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk. In order to travel on this trip, you: 1. Must be able to understand and recognize the risks and hazards inherent in the activities of the trip, must be able to decide to assume those risks and hazards and must actually and voluntarily assume those risks and hazards. 2. Must be able to withstand exposure to the outdoors including exposure to diverse climactic conditions during the trip, including temperatures ranging from below freezing to +100 degrees F, potentially rapidly changing precipitative conditions from dry conditions to precipitation including monsoons and flash floods, for the duration of the Program. 3. Must be able to monitor and evaluate changes in personal health condition including the onset of dehydration, hyponatremia, heat illness or stroke or hypothermia and must be able to communicate any changes in personal health condition or safety concerns to the guide(s). 4. Must be able to participate in all activities at the time scheduled for each activity; e.g. to beat the heat, guest pick-up and hike start times during summer months may range between 3-6 a.m. 5. Must be able to manage all personal care and mobility during extended periods of exertion of 10-plus hours per day, either independently or with the assistance of a companion or an approved assistive device. 6. Must be able to enter and exit a multi-passenger vehicle either independently or with the assistance of a companion or approved assistive device. 7. Must be able to withstand up to eight hours as a passenger in a multi-passenger vehicle, transporting up to 14 passengers at a time, either independently or with the assistance of a companion or an approved assistive device. 8. Must be able to immediately comprehend and follow verbal instructions either independently or with the assistance of a companion or approved assistive device. 9. Must be able to traverse wet and dry, sandy, rocky, uneven and/or unstable ground over a distance of 10-plus miles per day including elevation differential (gain and/or loss) of +3,000 feet per day, for a period of up to 10 hours per day, while carrying: a) BACKPACKING/BACKCOUNTRY TRIPS- a backpack weighing 25-50 pounds, b) FRONTCOUNTRY/LODGE, BASECAMP AND INN-BASED TRIPS - a fully loaded backpack weighing 10-15 pounds, either independently or with an assistance companion or an approved assistive device. 10. Must be able to self-manage and self-navigate unsupervised while in the designated camp area either independently or with the assistance of a companion or approved assistive device. 11. Must be able to perform basic camping activities including sleeping on the ground, consuming water from back country sources, consuming food prepared in a backcountry setting and maintaining personal health and hygiene in accordance with guide directives either independently or with the assistance of a companion or approved assistive device. The use of an assistive device to meet any element of the essential eligibility criteria must be approved in advance by Intrepid Travel.

Day 1 - Flagstaff/Grand Canyon National Park - South Kaibab Trail Hike
Meet your guide between 4am and 7am at the Little America Hotel in Flagstaff and begin your Grand Canyon adventure on the South Kaibab Trail, a popular hiking route that offers spectacular views both up and down the Grand Canyon. You’ll hike along a well-maintained trail to the Bright Angel Campground, your camping spot for the first night of the trip. This camp is one of the most charming in Grand Canyon National Park as it’s situated at the bottom of the Grand Canyon near the Colorado River and adjacent to Bright Angel Creek. Campsites are shaded by tall, spreading cottonwoods, piped drinking water is available, and nearby Phantom Ranch offers a snack bar if you feel like a treat. After you’ve settled into your tent, join your group for a hearty dinner.
Day 2 - Grand Canyon National Park - South Kaibab Trail
After breakfast, break camp and join your leader and group for the hike via Angel Box Canyon to Cottonwood Campground. The box canyon's sheer granite walls rise hundreds of feet above us as we hike along the crystal clear Bright Angel Creek to reach our campground. After a delicious camp dinner you might want to turn in early to rest up for tomorrow's hike to the North Rim.
Day 3 - Grand Canyon National Park - North Rim Hike (ascent)
After a hearty early breakfast, you’ll start your hike towards the North Rim. This hike is fantastic for natural history buffs as you’ll hike up through a semi-arid High Sonoran desert environment at mid-canyon to a dense mixed conifer forest on the rim. If you think the views are incredible near the bottom of the hike, wait until you get to the top! Once you arrive, you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the view before the hike back along the same route to camp.
Day 4 - Grand Canyon National Park - Cottonwood Campground to Bright Angel Campground
After breakfast, you’ll break camp and retrace your steps to Bright Angel Campground. What goes up must come down so - unlike your previous walk along this trail - you’ll mostly be heading downhill this time around. Enjoy a different perspective on the stunning scenery that surrounds you as you hike to your camp for tonight.
Day 5 - Grand Canyon National Park -Bright Angel Trail to Havasupai Garden Campground
After breakfast, break camp and set off on the Bright Angel Trail alongside the Colorado River and arrive at Pipe Creek where you’ll enjoy a rest. From here, you’ll hike up Pipe Creek past its junction with Garden Creek to Havasupai Garden – a spring site that watered seasonal Havasupai garden plots for centuries. After you’ve enjoyed a break, it’s a short final hike to our camp for the night – Havasupai Garden Campground – another enchanting Grand Canyon camp with shade and water.
Day 6 - Grand Canyon National Park - Bright Angel Trail Hike & Flagstaff
A relaxed morning and delicious breakfast will precede a beautiful hike as we continue our ascent via the Bright Angel Trail to the South Rim where we’ll look back over our trip and reflect on the beauty of this place and our accomplishment in achieving something that few hikers have experienced. On arrival, you’ll be transferred back to Flagstaff where your adventure began and your Grand Canyon hiking tour will come to an end at approximately 5 pm.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
16-11-202421-11-2024AUD $ 3,440-
01-12-202406-12-2024AUD $ 3,440-
02-12-202407-12-2024AUD $ 3,440-


Camping (5 nights)


Private vehicle