is the most frequently visited area of the park. Nearly
five million visitors come to the south rim to see the
park annually. It is 60 miles north of Williams and 80
miles north of Flagstaff. Although it is only ten miles
to the north rim as the crow flies, it is a 220 mile ride
by car to get to the north rim.
arrival at the south rim,
stop at the visitor center to get an overview of the park.
At the visitor center, there is a free slide show presentation
and also exhibits about the Grand Canyon's history, geology,
wildlife, and activities. Park rangers are available to
answer any questions you might have.
weather at the south rim can change abruptly any
time of year. Summers are hot and dry, although thunderstorms
and sudden temperature drops do occur. Winters bring freezing
temperatures and snowstorms. The 5,000-foot elevation
difference between the rim and the bottom of the canyon
means that, in summer, rim temperatures in the 70s to
80s can translate to temperatures exceeding 110°F at the
canyon bottom. Spring and fall are pleasant and warm.
south rim of the Grand Canyon is mostly desert.
There are very few springs in the area and absolutely
no surface water. The plants and animals of the south
rim, over millions of years, have adapted to these conditions.
Trees like the Pinon Pine and Utah Juniper do very well
here. They don't need much water, and they are very thrifty
with the water that they do get. Groves of Douglas Fir
are strewn along the south rim, the highest concentrations
around the visitor center and along the East Rim Drive.
Besides those, cacti, agave and yucca plants also thrive
on the south rim.