Grand Canyon South Rim Camping and Day Hike to Indian Gardens and Plateau Point

  • May 3, 2013 · 5:00 PM
  • This location is shown only to members

This hike is rated VERY DIFFICULT!

Join us for a special trip to Arizona's most famous outdoor location, the Grand Canyon! We'll enjoy three days (and two nights) of camping on the south rim at Mather Campground, with a full day hike to Plateau Point with beautiful views of the Canyon and Colorado River via the Bright Angel Trail.

Friday 3rd May 2013:

  • Drive to Mather Campground on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.  We have Group Campsite #5.
  • Set up camp
  • Communal dinner at campsite.  Some sort of pasta dish so we are all "carbed up" for the hike.  Bring your own beverage of choice and an appetizer or dessert to share. If you have special dietary needs or preferences please let us know in your response.

Saturday 4th May 2013:

  • Breakfast (bring your own favorite - we'll have hot water for coffee, tea, chocolate etc.)
  • Leave campsite around 7:30 to catch shuttle to Bright Angel Trailhead
  • Start down Bright Angel Trail around 8:00 - 8:15.
  • Hike to Indian Gardens.  Water and restrooms available at 1.5 mile house, 3 mile house, and Indian Gardens.  We will stop for a short rest at Indian Gardens.
  • Hike to Plateau Point and back.
  • Lunch at Indian Gardens
  • Hike out up the Bright Angel Trail
  • Showers are available at the campground
  • Dinner at one of the lodges (to be determined)

Sunday 5th May 2013:

  • Break camp - leave by 11am
  • Drive back to Phoenix (lunch at brewpub in Flagstaff?)


  1. This is a camping trip! Although not encouraged, if you want to stay at a hotel or drive up the morning of the hike, that's your business. However if you do so, do not RSVP for this event as you will take up a campground space from someone who wants it.  However, please let us know if you plan on joining us at the Trailhead for the hike itself. However, please bear in mind that we will limit the number of hikers in our group to be sure of a safe and environmental friendly experience!
  2. This is also a hiking trip! In order to accompany us you must be fit enough to do the hike as described below. Preference is given to members who regularly attend our events and have demonstrated the requisite level of hiking ability.  We reserve the right to suggest that hikers who cannot demonstrate capability to finish this type of hike NOT attend!  Let us know what you have done before.
  3. The campground is drive-up car camping, however only two cars are allowed to park at the immediate campsite at any time. You must drop off your stuff and park nearby. We'll figure it out on-site and walk or shuttle-car from the larger parking areas as necessary.
  4. The fee covers the campsite and a communal dinner on Friday night. No, there is no discount if you skip the communal meal. There are NO refunds if you cancel your trip.
  5. We're also asking people to bring some item to share. You can contribute salad, dessert, firewood, propane, or other items. Mention in your RSVP what you'd like to bring.
  6. Tents, sleeping bags, hiking gear, etc, and all other meals are your responsibility. Camping equipment may be rented from REI and elsewhere if needed.
  7. Overnight average temperatures on the rim can drop 20+ degrees and get quite cold. This time of year, be prepared for mid to lower thirties at night and daytime highs on the rim average sixty to seventy. The bottom will be quite hot during our visit! And there is always the possibility of rain.  As the date gets close, you can see the actual weather forecast here. Pack and dress in layers accordingly.

DISTANCE: ~ 9.5 miles roundtrip
ELEVATION GAIN: ~ 3000 ft!
DURATION: ~ 10 hours (time for lunch at Indian Gardens)
TRAIL STYLE: In-and-out
DOGS: NO, pets are not allowed by the NPS into the canyon.
FACILITIES: Bathrooms and water
WEBSITE: Trailmap

CARPOOL LOCATION: We'll meet at the McDonald's parking lot at the intersection of Carefree Highway and I17. The address is 3140 W Carefree Highway, Phoenix, AZ. Park along the wall by the street. Mention in your RSVP if you're going to carpool. We'll leave there by 1:00 pm on Friday afternoon!  If you need to leave later, let us know and we'll try to arrange a later carpool too.

DIRECTIONS TO TRAILHEAD: Follow the Google map link above to Grand Canyon National Park. Go through the entry gate and follow signs for Mather Campground. Campsite details to be provided later. The entry fees for the park is $25 per vehicle and all passengers.  We'll meet starting at 4:00 pm on Friday night!

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  • Marshall

    All the photos I took (including Shoshone Point) I uploaded to the "Hikes Only" event.

    May 6

  • Mia Sheen

    Thank you for organizing this hike, Robert.
    it was an awesome first time Grand Canyon hiking experience and a great opportunity to meet more regular members. Especially those who kept me laughing, like Amenda.
    From eating the gluten free pasta meal to half burned marshmallow in a shivering night, it was priceless!
    I am especially thankful to Denise, Eli & Margaret for their willingness to help and share their stuff.

    Thank you all for such a great experience! : )

    1 · May 6

  • Kaveh

    Thanks Robert for organizing, and thanks to everyone who came and made it a great fun adventure! :-)

    2 · May 6

  • Denise LaDoux

    Thanks for hosting such a wonderful trip, Robert! Eli and I had a lot of fun with some great company! The views and pine-scented air were pretty spectacular, too.

    2 · May 6

  • Robert K.

    Great hike, beautiful scenary, fanatastic group. Thanks to all for making this event such a success.

    1 · May 5

  • Dan W

    That hike was was the canyon. Thanks Robert

    May 5

  • Amina Dee

    Stunning! Awesome! and Beautiful!

    May 5

  • Brad

    Sorry.. Last minute unforseen happenings.. I'm unable to attend..

    May 2

  • Angela Miller

    Have a great time! Wish we could go... Month end for John and biz trip for me got in the way. Last year was such fun and hoping everyone has the same amazing experience!

    May 2

  • Amanda

    Is there anyone who does not have a ride and would be available to leave north Phoenix by 11 am? There is one open spot in our vehicle...

    May 1

  • Mia Sheen

    I need a ride...
    My time is flexible and I don't take up too much space : )

    April 26

    • Mia Sheen

      Denise, thank you so much and look forward to meeting you on Friday! : )

      April 28

    • Denise LaDoux

      Mia, I just wanted to check and see if you need a sleeping bag. I have extras I can bring. I am "double-bagging"­ it because it will be so cold at night. My daughter uses a yoga mat for insulation on the cot and it works well. My number is [masked] if you have any questions or need to borrow more gear. Don't worry, I have plenty!

      April 30

  • Randy

    Not going to make this trip. Sorry

    April 29

  • Keli Dewsnup

    I would like to go, is anyone driving up in the evening? Or needs to go up later? I don't mind driving.

    April 27

  • Karen Horoschak

    Does Dan still need a ride?

    April 26

    • Dan W

      I do Karen........need a ride. The number is [masked]. Thanks

      April 26

  • Robert K.

    All, only a week before our trip to the Grand Canyon. In order to minimize costs (and pollution!) please consider car-pooling. I have suggested a 1pm time for leaving the Carefree Hwy/I17 location, but perhaps a later time would be better for some - please chime in with your preferences, and whether you would like to ride or drive. I plan on leaving on Friday morning. and won't have a spare seat for another rider.

    April 26

  • Kaveh

    Last weekend for training!

    Saturday Quartz Peak (Estrella):­

    Sunday Wilson Mnt (Sedona):­

    1 · April 24, 2013

  • Dan W

    OK, just nine days to go....and I need a ride. I'm great company, lot's of jokes...and can help out with the octane. I can leave anytime Friday.

    April 24, 2013

  • waynette brown

    I booked my own site! I'll come visit you!

    April 22, 2013

  • Nina D

    Sorry, I cannot attend this event, but I will be on the North Rim .

    April 21, 2013

  • Faith Amadori

    Paulette, Julie & I will be staying at a motel and will join you all on the hike and at the camp site.

    April 20, 2013

  • Denise LaDoux

    I have a HUGE (8 person) tent and two extra cots if any ladies would like to camp but don't have a tent and/or don't want to sleep on the ground. Let me know, otherwise I'll just bring the little tent.

    April 16, 2013

  • Heidi H

    Hi _ I want one of the open spots but can't figure out how to rsvp. I'm on waitlist. Pleasee move me up to an open spot.

    April 17, 2013

  • Archana

    Feel bad cancelling this trip but unfortunately won't be able to make it this time.

    April 17, 2013

  • Joe Vaughan

    Schedule conflict.

    April 8, 2013

  • Joe Vaughan

    Scheduling conflict.

    April 8, 2013

  • Amina Dee

    Hi Robert and Friends, I am giving up my spot as I am still attending the hike but I am staying with Eric & Lorena's group. If I remove myself from the list, will I get a refund or shall I sell my spot to someone?

    January 17, 2013

    • Amina Dee

      Hi Robert, I am back in on this.(I never withdrew my RSVP.)

      April 1, 2013

  • Rich

    I'm interested in car pooling with someone.....sharing gas expenses.....I'll be camping out

    March 7, 2013

  • annette marroquin

    I will not be able to attend after all.

    February 25, 2013

  • Joseph Trovarelli

    might have a friend join us

    February 18, 2013

  • Karen

    My daughter may want to join me on this trip. She would be coming from Utah.

    February 14, 2013

  • Marshall

    I have reservations for a room in a lodge at the South Rim the weekend of May 3. I'll be joining the group on the hike and as many other festivities as I can. I'm definitely driving and would be willing to take on a passenger (probably two passengers tops). However, I plan on going up Friday (May 3) and returning on Monday (May 6).

    In the event write-up it states that the park entry fees are waived the week of the trip. However, there is no mention of free entrance on these dates at­

    November 25, 2012

    • Joseph Trovarelli

      Hi Marshall I will stay with you for the night of 3 May maybe the 4 May is that ok.

      February 8, 2013

    • Marshall


      February 9, 2013

  • Margaret

    FYI I'm interested in carpooling.

    February 7, 2013

  • Donna McNeil

    I am interested in staying in a hotel. They still have rooms at Yavapai Lodge but they are $166 / night. Any other women interested in sharing or adding another person to your hotel reservation?

    January 24, 2013

  • Brian Y

    If someone would like to share a hotel room & car pool together let me know. If so I will free up a spot at the campground.

    January 24, 2013

  • Joseph Trovarelli

    might have a friend join us

    January 12, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Myself and a few others might be staying in a hotel but count us in for the hike and the gathering around the camp fire!

    1 · January 8, 2013

  • Tami Wilson

    I am getting a hotel room

    January 8, 2013

  • Amanda

    Super excited!! Last years trip was AWESOME!!!:-D

    January 8, 2013

  • Tami Wilson

    I hiked the whole canyon in 2000. If I am fit by then I want to go and maybe bring a guest. Probably will get a hotel. I am sure you are packing your own lunch.

    January 8, 2013

  • Barbara Verri

    Robert, once you open for RSVP's how many can attend?

    January 2, 2013

    • Robert K.

      Trying to keep the group to around 20 max. We can add a few more if there is interest.

      January 2, 2013

15 went

Your organizer's refund policy for Grand Canyon South Rim Camping and Day Hike to Indian Gardens and Plateau Point

Refunds are not offered for this Meetup.

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