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Can you do Grand Canyon in One Day?

Updated: Jan 27

Is this going to be your first time visiting the Grand Canyon? Right now we are going to give you four itineraries that will give you grand ideas and help you plan how many days you want to stay at the Grand Canyon and what you want to do with them. We are going to focus on first time hiking and bike rides in the Grand Canyon. If you are ready for grand views, elk, big horn sheep, and some of the best casual biking in the United States then Let’s get started! For the video version of this blog watch it here or continue reading below!



Can you Do the Grand Canyon in One Day?


If we only had one day in the Grand Canyon we would want to hike down into the Grand Canyon a little and see as many views of the canyon as we could. Due to the weather of the Grand Canyon and the number of people on the trail we would start our day hiking South Kaibab Trail to Ooh Aah Point. Compared to Bright Angel we feel this is the easier hike and will provide most people with enough energy to take on our next recommendation. South Kaibab Trail was the National parks Service response to the fee people had to pay to hike Bright Angel Trail at the time and was the first rim 2 rim hike in the Grand Canyon. Ooh Aah Point also provides one of the best views in the park.


a group of people hiking down into the Grand Canyon on improved South Kaibab Trail with a view of the canyon in the background
a girl hiking down into the grand canyon on an improved trail with a hiking pack and trekking pole

Can you Bike in the Grand Canyon?


We are going to add on more hikes and now tell you about the best biking in the park.

After resting up a bit either in the Village or near the visitors center we would bike from Bright Angel Trail on the West end of the Village to Hermit’s Rest for some ice cream. This is a moderate bike ride with elevation changes so if you have any doubts you may want to rent an e-bike from Bright Angel Bicycles. The ride will take you where only shuttles can go as well as a special bike trail near Hermit’s Rest. This ride will get you away from other travelers and to some of the best rim views of the Colorado River.





We’ll tell you a little later how many days in the Grand Canyon were right for us and why.


One thing to note is that we camped in Trailer Village and brought our own food so your experience may be different if you need to find a market and restaurants. This allowed us to maximize our outdoor time.


Is 2 days enough to see the Grand Canyon?


If we had two days in the Grand Canyon we would try to pack in a lot. The first morning we would hike Bright Angel Trail to the 1.5 mile resthouse. This is a difficult hike and you should plan on 3-4 hours plus preparation and recovery time. For more on this hike check out the video we have linked in our description. The rest of the day we would recommend touring the Village and Visitor’s center and hanging around the South rim trail. Day 2 ride bikes out to Yaki Point first thing in the morning and then hike South Kaibab Trail to Ooh Aah Point. Biking to Yaki Point is only recommended if you are staying in the Park at the campgrounds or village. Otherwise it may make more sense to use the shuttle service. If you have energy left bike from Bright Angel Trail to Hermit’s rest in the afternoon. As you might guess this is a full day and not for everyone.

Stay until the end for the most important thing to consider in any of these itineraries. If you are like us you like to get out and enjoy the outdoors. The biking and hiking on these lists maximize your time and help you explore the most of the South Rim. Fill in any of the additional time with smaller items around the Grand Canyon.



Can you do Grand Canyon in 3 days?


Our 3 day itinerary would do everything in the 2-day but would give you another day to complete the 2 bike rides and the 2 hikes. This would also give you more time in the Village and at the Visitor’s center to explore and relax. We would hike Bright Angel the morning of Day 1 and hang out in the Village in the afternoon. Day 2 ride bikes out to Yaki Point and hike South Kaibab Trail to Ooh Aah Point. We have a video linked in our description for this bike ride. Day 3 use to bike from the Village and Bright Angel out to Hermit’s Rest for some amazing views and ice cream.

We don’t feel three days is enough time to explore the Grand Canyon.



Is 4 Days Enough for the Grand Canyon?


4 Days would give you more time for all of these while going to restaurants, relaxing at the lodge or campgrounds, and maybe extending your hikes or driving further east along the rim to the far entrance. We really feel Bright Angel Trail should be done day 1 when you have the most energy. Day 2 recover by hiking the South Rim Trail from Bright Angel to Mather Point and beyond if you like and include time in the Village to explore. Day 3 bike to Yaki Point and hike South Kaibab to Ooh Aah Point. Day 4 bike ride from the Village to Hermit’s Rest for ice cream. If you are interested in biking out to Hermit’s rest:  Prepare for Biking the Grand Canyon from the Village to Hermit's Rest (campbrood.com)



Do you get Altitude Sickness at the Grand Canyon?


You may have other expectations for your trip and we hope these plans and this next tip help you decide what is right for you. As you decide what you would like to do, remember that the rim is 7,000 feet above sea level. Altitude could affect your ability to take on these hikes and bike rides. Acclimate to the altitude, drink plenty of water, and include an extra day if you think you will need it. To continue planning, read this next!


Here are some examples of the items we used while hiking and biking in the Grand Canyon


Teton Sports Hydration Pack Video Review: https://youtu.be/KEBrYwp8RQk

Amazon Link: 2021 model https://amzn.to/3SnKcGR

Camelbak Mini M.U.L.E hydration backpack Video Review for younger hikers: https://youtu.be/WbRgZr6C20g


Merrell Moab II Men's Hiking Shoes: https://amzn.to/3Ardw8k


The First Aid Kit we carry: https://amzn.to/3Lcvu2h

Tactical Flashlights: https://amzn.to/3QLY25T


Here are dad joke books for great gifts: Dad Jokes Around the Campfire: https://amzn.to/3JinFJ2 600 Funniest Dad Jokes: https://amzn.to/3EPGv7D To view any product mentioned by us in our videos, click this link: https://www.amazon.com/shop/campbrood As an Amazon Associate, we earn a commission from qualifying purchases.


Here is a link to the National Park Service maps page: Maps - Grand Canyon National Park (U.S. National Park Service) (nps.gov)





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