SummaryTrail GuideTopo MapReviewsPhotosGPS
Hermits Rest to Santa Maria Spring Professional Review and Guide
"A more challenging, but rewarding day hike traverses below the western reaches of the South Rim. From Mar 1 through Nov 30, Hermit Road is closed to private vehicles. During this time, a free shuttle bus offers access to Hermits Rest every 15 and 30 minutes from about 5:15 a.m. to sunset each day. You can board the shuttle bus at the Hermits Rest Transfer shuttle bus stop.This fine trip follows a trail constructed by the Santa Fe Railroad in 1912 and leads to the shady resthouse at Santa Maria Spring, perched high above the abyss of Hermit Creek Canyon. Although the trail was abandoned in 1931 and the tread is generally rougher than the groomed Corridor trails, it remains easy to follow as far as the spring."
--Ron Adkison and Ben Adkison, Best Easy Day Hikes Grand Canyon (Falcon Guides).
The trail begins at the end of the road and it was just great to be able to get down into the canyon on a less developed trail. The trail descends quickly and is a challenge to come back up if the quick descent rate is not factored into the return trip.
Be sure to know the layers of the Canyon as you will pass through several of them and knowing their origin adds to the scenic awe. Also be sure to bring water. There were a lot of people on the trail who didn't have enough water or bring food and were struggling to get back up again, especially those with children.
It was totally worth the harder hiking effort to watch birds soar!
Sign in/up to upload photos.