Ghost Town – Grand Canyon – History & Awe

Everyone knows the Grand Canyon is amazing – but do you know its only about 59 miles from St George AND you can drive there!?  This is a journey my wife and I took about two weeks ago with our kids.  (Actual road miles due to the road is just over 100 but certainly within a ‘Day-Trip’ range)

Toroweap Overlook

I took this photo overlooking the Grand Canyon at the Toroweap overlook.

It is suggested that you have a ‘high-clearance’ vehicle.  We found you could drive there in any car, but the last 2 miles is where you would need the clearance.  4×4 is not required unless it rains – then I would not go.  The dirt road getting to the ranger station for our group was well maintained and fairly smooth ride.  We averaged 40 mph most of the time.  I did make sure I had a good spare tire and water.

The shortest route is to drive to Colorado City, take ‘Clayhole’ Road to county road [5] and drive in a southward direction following the signs to the Grand Canyon.  We found the road to be very well marked.  I would plan 2 1/2 hours drive time each way.

Canyon Pond

I took this photo about 200 yards from the rim near the campsites.  You can get a back country permit to camp overnight at the rim (about $20).  I like this photo for the contrast and perspective of the red rocks an the way it humbles me to the greatness of nature around us.

I think if a person had mountain bikes, I would ride those the last two miles from the ranger station to the rim.  At the rim overlook there are rest rooms available and a picnic area with tables and trees for some shade.  (Fires not allowed)

School House and Mt Trumull Townsite

A short diversion is the old Mt. Trumbull (Bundyville) school house and historic homesteads.  The school is open and you can learn a great deal of history of the area and the people behind it too.  There are rest rooms and a playground here too that made for a nice rest stop on our drive.

Our group took the longer route.  We left St George on River road and drove to the Mt. Trumbull/Bundyville school house, then turned and drove up and over Mt. Trumbull to the sawmill historic site then down to the Grand Canyon.  On the way back we took state road 5 to Colorado City and came back to St George via Hurricane.