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North or South Rim?

NY
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North or South Rim?

We are planning on visiting the Grand Canyon this upcoming summer. In addition to the Grand Canyon, we are going to Bryce and Zion. I am debating on the following scenarios, and any input would be greatly appreciated!

1) Spend 2 nights at the south rim

2) Spend 2 nights at the north rim

3) Spend 1 night at the south rim and 1 night at the north

Sedona, AZ
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for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
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1. Re: North or South Rim?

Don't split the two rims. You'll end up seeing nothing.

The north rim is closer to Zion and Bryce and makes sense logistically. The down side is that there are fewer facilities and greater distances between fewer view points, than the south rim.

For first time visitors I generally recommend the south rim because you'll see and learn much more about the Grand Canyon there. How much time are you giving to Zion and Bryce?

Encinitas...
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for Zion National Park, Joshua Tree National Park
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2. Re: North or South Rim?

North Rim is much closer to Zion and Bryce, so think about staying there. But whatever you decide, get going on making reservations ASAP as soon as you know your dates. Lodging at the NR is more limited than at the SR, and sells out up to a year in advance.

Uden, The...
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3. Re: North or South Rim?

Where are you flying into? Maybe give us some more details about your itinerary.

Ann Arbor, Michigan
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for Grand Canyon National Park
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4. Re: North or South Rim?

At this point, I think you may find that your plans may have to be adjusted to fit around lodging availability. I would do some calling and consider your options before nailing down an itinerary.

There is only one lodge at the North Rim. I just took a quick glance and it's sold out all of July and August, with only a scattering of availability in June and September. The South Rim has a lot more rooms but I'm guessing that some days are already sold out and your options will be limited soon. I would stay two nights at one rim or the other, depending on what's available.

I would try to stay inside the park at Bryce as well.

Zion is probably where you will have some flexibility since Springdale is convenient to the Park. You'll want at least 2 full days.

Seattle
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for Grand Canyon National Park
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5. Re: North or South Rim?

I would highly recommend staying at the North Rim with your itinerary. We prefer it in summer in any case.

DetTigerFan, there must have been a website malfunction when you checked availability. I just checked the availability calendar for Grand Canyon Lodge and it shows availability of rooms for every date in July and August. I confirmed by picking several different dates for 2-night stays and could get a room or cabin (although not a Wester Cabin) on any of them. June and September are more limited.

Andrea, if you checked earlier for a cabin at Grand Canyon Lodge and found nothing, check again. Make sure you are on th eofficial website:

http://www.grandcanyonlodgenorth.com/lodging/

When you click on "reservations" it will take you to the site of the concessioner, Forever Resorts, to make the booking.

Encinitas...
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for Zion National Park, Joshua Tree National Park
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6. Re: North or South Rim?

If ,after checking the website,the place is sold out, you should still call. Cancellations happen all the time but get picked up by people who call to inquire.

Ann Arbor, Michigan
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7. Re: North or South Rim?

@Enzian, wow, that's wild... July and August were solid dark gray... lol (though I didn't try any specific dates.)

In that case, I'd agree that the North Rim would make the most sense in an itinerary with Zion and Bryce. I would expect Zion to be quite crowded; I think you'll appreciate the relative quiet at the North Rim.

Seattle
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8. Re: North or South Rim?

I assume there was some kind of website glitch. I have seen that happen before, so I have learned that it is always worth re-checking.

I just checked again andGrand Canyon Lodge is still clear (light grey) for all of July and August; less so for June and September. So now I am frantically trying to decide if we have time to make it down this summer. . . .

NY
5 posts
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9. Re: North or South Rim?

Thank you both for your input! I knew about the Grand Canyon Lodge already - we tried to stay there years ago but it was sold out! I booked a pioneer cabin :-) I had booked 2 nights at El Tovar on the south rim, but I am going to cancel that. I really wanted to stay at that hotel, but I think the less busy north rim will work out better for us.

Thanks again!

NY
5 posts
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10. Re: North or South Rim?

I've been there before... many years ago when I was in 9th grade! We decided to go with the north rim since it seems many websites say it will be less busy. We will most likely do some hiking along the rim while we are there!