The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is located 220 miles by road from the South Rim. Unfortunately, only 10 percent of the 5 million yearly visitors ever travel to the more remote, but just as beautiful, north side. With many sights to see and a wide range of wildlife , the North Rim truly is spectacular. Unfortunately, the North Rim is only open from mid-May through October.
With a history that starts nearly 4,000 years ago , the North Rim has been home to the Desert Archaic people, the Anasazi, and the Paiute all before Europeans came in 1540. The Paiute were the ones to give the plateaus of the North Rim their names. It was the beauty of the area that gave the Paiutes the ideas for names.
Kaibab, meaning “Mountain Lying Down,” is the easternmost plateau. Here you will find Grand Canyon Lodge and major trailheads. Kanab, meaning “Willow,” is just west of Kaibab and home to Kanab Canyon. Uinkaret, meaning “Place of Pines,” is home to Toroweap Point. Here, millions of years ago, molten rock flowed over the canyon rim and coated the walls with lava. The Shivwits, meaning “Little People,” are home to Hurricane Cliffs.
The North Rim is a great place to see some unique rock formations and the Colorado River. The North Rim is home to the Bar 10 Ranch, six hiking trails and two scenic drives. The trails range from an easy half-mile trail to a two or three-day trip to the canyon bottom. The driving trips offer beautiful views of the canyon. On one hand, you can see Mount Hayden and Saddle Mountain while standing on the highest point in the park, Point Imperial. On the other hand, you can see stunning vistas of the canyon and the Colorado River.