Home DESTINATION SPOTLIGHT Grand Canyon AZ: Mule Ride Experiences
Grand Canyon AZ: Mule Ride Experiences PDF Print E-mail

Arizona’s Grand Canyon offers sweeping views of one of the most breathtaking natural settings on Earth. A favorite venture there is the exciting mule ride along the Bright Angel Trail. It’s a one-mile trek straight down from the South Rim to ground level to the banks of the Colorado River.

Canyon Accommodations: The mule corral is at Bright Angel Lodge next to the South Rim, and daily escorted rides start there. Nightly charges range from about $100 for a basic room with shared bathroom, to $500 for a large three-bedroom cabin with a fireplace. www.grandcanyonlodges.com/bright-angel-lodge The Mule Ride: The basic one is the three-hour Abyss Overlook Ride. The cost is about $70, and includes a light snack. Other programs are overnight rides, meals, with a stay at Phantom Ranch cabins at the bottom of the Canyon, next to the Colorado River banks.

For the adventurous senior, it’s like a return to the Old West days. Currently, overnight ride prices start at about $700 for the first person, or two people for about $1,000, including accommodations and all meals.

There are weight (225 lbs) and height (4’7”) limits on mule riders. Because it's extremely popular, reservations must usually be made at least a year in advance. Summer temperatures on the Bright Angel area rarely rise above 80 degrees, but riders may experience 100 degrees when they reach the desert floor.

There are other mule ride add-on options and pricing, including rafting trips on the Colorado River, extended hikes and camping. There are also mule ride facilities at the North Rim, but because of winter weather, they're available only from mid-May to mid-October. www.nps.gov/grca/planyourvisit/mule_trips.htm

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