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Grand Canyon National Park North Bass, AZ

Oct 2 - Oct 10, 2022 -- $1500 ★★★★★

Trip Description

What can we possibly tell you about Grand Canyon National Park, that would persuade you to visit? Would it help to know that it's considered one of the 7 Wonders of the Natural World? Or that the geologic features reveal 40% of the Earth's history? Or that the Grand Canyon is home to some of the cleanest air in the United States? Or that it's well over a mile deep, giving rise to superlative, unobstructed views?

The Grand Canyon is a life list destination that words are insufficient to fully describe. You owe it to yourself to visit this truly amazing wonder, even once.

Unlike our other Grand Canyon trips, The North Bass Trail. starts and ends on the less crowded North Rim, in a remote section of the rim. According to Backpacker Magazine, "With all due respect to the hordes on the corridor trails, there's a better, lonelier way to descend into Arizona's belly and back again". This will truly be an epic adventure that traverses the Grand Canyon in a much different way (both geographically and spiritually) than the corridor trails. We may encounter rafting groups at Bass Camp on the Colorado River, but probably only a few people along our route. In 2021 we saw exactly zero people on the trail itself.

Sign up to do this trip now, while you're young and capable.


Weather is always an important concern when backpacking, especially in the Grand Canyon. October is a great to visit weather-wise as snow has probably not yet started on the North Rim and it's (hopefully) no longer oppressively hot in the canyon. Still, be prepared for freezing weather or even snow on the rim, but also be prepared for 100 degrees and little water in the canyon. Chances are, neither extremes will happen but we must be prepared for both.

Probable Trip Leaders

Steve Silberberg
2nd Guide TBD


$1500 per person double occupancy. Here, double occupancy means that you will share a hotel room with another trip participant. You will also be responsible for transportation to and from Las Vegas McCarran Airport (LAS) as well as personal equipment, restaurant meals and any gratuities for guides.

Covered expenses include 1 (possibly 2) hotel nights, backcountry reservations, 8 days of trail meals, ground transportation, National Park permits, fees and awesome guides.

Tipping: In order to keep our prices competitive with (and hopefully favorable to) other outfitters, we shamefully can’t pay our guides as much as we think they deserve. Like most other guiding services, we rely on the generosity of our participants to make up this shortfall by tipping the guides. While tips are not required or expected, if your guides have served you well, please consider a gratuity so they can continue living their extravagant lifestyles of eating powdered meals, sleeping in the dirt and pooping in smelly outhouses and small holes they've dug.

Important Note

Although it seems like this trip is overly long in order to get to the Colorado River and back, it's because the terrain can be extremely steep and the trail can be in terrible condition: overgrown, choked with vegetation, rocky and/or washed out. Plus the temperature can be freezing or 100 degrees. Still, it's the Grand Canyon!!

Difficulty (Please Read)

The Grand Canyon can be extremely difficult and forbidding. The temperatures can be freezing or over 100 degrees. There is little to no shade in some areas, so you may be exposed to the beating sun for extended periods. Sun block is not sufficient for this, you must bring a wide brimmed hat, long sleeve shirt and long pants.

Furthermore, we will be dry-camping (no water) on at least 2 nights. Water may not be available for 2 days. It will be imperative to carry up to 2 gallons of water (16 pounds) on occasion. Carrying the extra weight makes your full pack even heavier. Elevation gains and losses are dramatic in some places. Expect to gain or lose over 2800' vertical on some days. In order to do this, you will need to be sufficiently hydrated. Plus, your feet must remain in good shape. Blisters and unclipped toenails will cripple you and make progress extremely slow and painful so be mindful of hot spots as they develop.

If you have a fear of heights, some short sections of this trail may paralyze you with fear. Although most people hike this trail without issue, those with a heightened sense of fear at drop-offs may not fare well.

Even though our total mileage over 7 days is only 27 miles, this is still rated a 5 star trip.

Training tips


This is only a tentative itinerary that's subject to change. The park doesn't approve itineraries until 2 months before the trip. Because of this, we may have to run this trip a few days earlier or later, but this is the itinerary we are applying for so it's presented here. Obviously this makes it difficult for you (and us) to plan if your schedule is not somewhat flexible. We will let you know any changes as soon as we know them.

Here is our proposed route (CalTopo)

This is the 3rd of 3 Fatpacking trips to the Grand Canyon this year.

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Packing List
Guides for this trip
Important Note
Difficulty (Please Read)
Packing List
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Sunday, October 2, 2022

Fly or drive into McCarran Airport Las Vegas (LAS)

Take a free airport shuttle to local hotel (TBD)

Equipment shakedown. We go through your stuff to make sure you're properly outfitted.

Make-your-own trail mix bar out of various ingredients we provide

"Before" body composition measurements taken

Go to REI Las Vegas, 710 S. Rampart Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89145, (702) 951-4488, for last minute or forgotten equipment

Go out to a welcome dinner in town (not included in trip cost).

Monday, October 3, 2022

Wake up early (5:30AM)

Second set of "before" measurements taken

Your spare bag(s) will be put in storage at the hotel or storage unit

Guides will prepare a continental breakfast or hotel will have a to-go breakfast

Shuttle 5.5 hours to the Grand Canyon North Rim stopping for a picnic lunch (included) along the way.

Everyone should carry 8 liters of water today

Begin hiking at Swamp Point, elevation 7500' carrying 8 liters of water

Hike 1.0 miles to Muav Saddle, elevation 6700'. There's shade at a cabin about 100 meters off the trail

Hike 2.3 miles into and out of White Creek to a flat area with several nice camping spots. elevation 5100'

Camp at flat area above White Creek, elevation 5100'. There is no water here but leave 4 of the liters you've been carrying here for the way out.

Miles today: 3.3 miles. Total to date: 3.3 miles

Possible Bailout: North Rim

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Hike 1.2 miles to the top of the Redwall Descent, elevation 5000'

Hike 3.4 miles past a pouroff (last water for today) into the Tonto Layer and down White Creek to a flat, unmarked plateau, elevation 3450'

Camp at unmarked flat site, elevation 3450'

Miles Today: 4.5. Total to Date: 7.9

Possible Bailout: Colorado River one day away

Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Hike 2.4 miles to Shinumo Creek, elevation 2800'. Get water here.

Hike 1.7 miles to Shinumo Camp, elevation 2400'

Hike 1.5 miles to the Colorado River, elevation 2200'.

Camp at Bass Camp, elevation 2200'

Miles Today: 5.6. Total to Date: 13.5

Possible Bailout: Colorado River

Thursday, October 6, 2022

Hike 3.2 uphill miles to Shinumo Creek, elevation 2800'. Shinumo Creek has Reliable water.

Optional: 1.3 mile round trip to Shinumo Creek Hill, elevation 2500'

Camp at Shinumo Creek, elevation 2800'

Miles Today: 4.5. Total to Date: 18.0

Possible Bailout: Colorado River

Friday, October 7, 2022

Hike 3.9 uphill miles to White Creek pour-off, elevation 4050'

Camp at White Creek Pouroff, elevation 4050'. Pools of water should be here

Possible Bailout: North Rim or Colorado River, neither are good options

Miles today: 3.9 miles. Total to date: 21.9 miles

Saturday, October 8, 2022

Hike 2.1 grueling uphill miles to the Redwall Rim, elevation 5000'

Camp beyond Redwall Rim, elevation 5100'. We cached water here.

Miles today: 2.1 miles. Total to date: 24.0 miles

Possible Bailout: North Rim

Sunday, October 9, 2022

Hike 2.3 uphill miles to Muav Saddle, elevation 6700'

Hike 1.0 uphill miles to Swamp Point, elevation 7500'

End of Hiking

Miles today: 3.3 miles. Total to date: 27.3 miles

Possible Bailout: North Rim

Shuttle to the North Rim Campground,

Camp at the North Rim Frontcountry Campground, Site(s) TBD

PLEASE IGNORE THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT THAT BEGINS WITH "This is the official end of the trip". It is part of a template used to generate this page, but is not applicable to this trip.

This is the official end of the trip. You are welcome to spend the night at the hotel, however if you drove and would like to get on the road or if you flew and would like to schedule a late flight (or a red-eye if this is a West Coast trip) you can definitely do so.

Monday, October 10, 2022

Shuttle 5.5 hours back to Las Vegas

We will have 1 or possibly 2 rooms reserved for showers at a local hotel TBD

We anticipate that everyone will be flying home or leaving Las Vegas today, but if you'd like the room for the evening please let us know

"After" mesurements taken

Go out for celebratory dinner and awards Ceremony (dinner not included in trip cost)

Take free airport shuttle

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