Teen’s Visit to Grand Canyon on a Family Trip.

Grand Canyon with a Family.

Written by Dennis, then 17. (Photos by Vit, unless he is in the picture)

Near the culmination of my family’s summer road trip in the wild west, we journeyed to the greatest national park of them all: the Grand Canyon National Park.

(To book your own Grand Canyon experience, check out Get Your Guide site).

Teen’s Visit to Grand Canyon on a Family Trip.
View from Hermits Rest.

Situated in Arizona, the most famous out of all the American parks lives up to its legendary status: the canyon seems to go on forever in endless magnificence. At an astounding 277 miles long there are plenty of trails to hike and views to take in.  As I was in the company of two height fearing parents most of these stones were left unturned, and my heroic attempts to make the most of the environment was met with accusations of reckless and suicidal behavior. Regardless, there are a handful of family friendly experiences available for those on the cautionary side.

Our family started our Grand Canyon experience with an initial observation from the Desert View lookout, at the Eastern Entrance of the South Rim. Despite looking like a native American relic, the Desert View Tower is, in fact, a modern architecture (1932) by Mary Colter painstakingly designed to emulate antiquity.

Teen’s Visit to Grand Canyon on a Family Trip.
Eastern Rim. Desert View Tower.


Teen’s Visit to Grand Canyon on a Family Trip.
Inside the Desert View Tower. Planning our day.

After taking in the majestic views and snapping pictures of soaring eagles, we continued the 25-mile scenic drive along the south rim to the Visitor’s Center and Grand Canyon Village.

Teen’s Visit to Grand Canyon on a Family Trip
The views onto Grand Canyon from the Tower at Desert View

Once in the Village, we took the Hermit Road shuttle and hiked along the edge of the canyon between the bus stops. We walked to Hopi Point  from Powell Point bus stop along the edge of the rim for about half a mile. There is railing at the view points (bus stops) but not between the stops.


Teen’s Visit to Grand Canyon on a Family Trip
This is after Hopi Point on the way to Mohave Point. Mom was getting uncomfortable with the lack of railing and we got back on the bus.

We peered into the abyss before getting back on the bus to make it to the end of the route – Hermits Rest where we bought some snacks and refreshed. I’ve grown a sneaking suspicion that someone in our family must be a rain magnet, however: not soon after a thunderstorm developed and we all crammed into the final bus back to the Village as the route became dangerously wet.

Teen’s Visit to Grand Canyon on a Family Trip
It is about to rain. View from the Hermits Rest stop.  Colorado River is down below on the left.

As we retired to a meal in the Bright Angel Lodge (National Historic Landmark), we were rewarded with a glorious sight: a mythical double rainbow.


Teen's visit to Grand Canyon on a family trip.
Double-rainbow over Grand Canyon

A walk in the Grand Canyon Village offers several historical buildings and cultural museums for viewing, as well as a safer way for families to admire the Canyon  (we walked the under half a mile portion of the rim trail between the Bright Angel Lodge and El Tovar Hotel and it had a short stone fence along the edge of the rim.   The one-mile portion of the rim trail between the Village and Maricopa point on the Hermits Rest shuttle route is paved, but not fenced, except at the lookout areas).  Check out the Village map for details.

As we departed from the Canyon, I felt more American than I have ever felt.  I vowed to come back on my own.

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11 thoughts on “Grand Canyon with a Family.”

  1. I only spent a few hours at the Grand Canyon – took a helicopter tour there from Las Vegas. It was amazing, but I definitely want to go back and explore more. Thanks for joining us on #TheWeeklyPostcard.

  2. I like the Eastern Entrance of the South Rim. You get such a great view of the entire area, it’s fantastic. It seems you’ve got an excellent day there, Victoria. Thanks for joining us for #TheWeeklyPostcard.

  3. I love your comment that it made you feel “more American” than ever – fascinating. I would really like to go here – it’s been on my bucket list for ever. One day we’ll make it, but I think it might be some years away……

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  6. I’m always facinated of the Grand Canyon, not matter how many times I’ve seen it in pictures and I’ve visited it twice.

    The rainbow is indeed fabulous, I haven’t been fortunate enough to come across a real rainbow in my life 🙁

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