Best time to visit Grand Canyon

Kayaking in Grand Canyon

In need of adventure? Explore Grand Canyon from the river's angle—by kayak

Best time: April–October


If you crave the utmost experience of the legendary Grand Canyon, you can either get to its top and have a look from above, or the opposite—descend to the lowest point and observe its grandness from the very bottom. The Colorado River is an excellent way to do it. This water route winds across some of its most scenic and thriving areas. Besides viewing the surrounding beauty, the mighty Colorado River will pump you up with thrills and positive emotions.

Local tour operators provide various options for the individual, as well as, group kayaking. You may go on a regularly scheduled multi-day kayak adventure or reserve a two-week classic adventure. For the members of kayak schools, clubs or kayak adventure travel groups, there's an option of a group trip or a charter expedition. But, you have to make reservations long beforehand—e.g., for a charter expedition, it's two years in advance. Needless to say, you have to be an experienced kayaker with a sense of adventure.

If you want a one-day-adventure which combines some kayaking with hiking, there're a few places to find kayaks for rent not far from Grand Canyon. These are Glen Canyon below the Glen Canyon Dam and Black Canyon below the Hoover Dam.

The season for water sports in Grand Canyon generally runs from April through October, as winter months could be too cold and snowy at times. However, remember that the months of July and August are excessively hot. The summertime Colorado River sees the highest flows, as the river is fed by the flash floods from hundreds of side canyons. Wintertime is for the adventurous ones not afraid of snow and rain.

Practical info

When is the best time to visit Grand Canyon for kayaking?

Grand Canyon is ideal for kayaking from April to October as the weather is warm, and the river is comparatively calmer with less cold and snow. High flows can be witnessed during summer months, particularly in July and August, as the river is nourished by the flash floods from hundreds of side canyons. Show more

Where can I rent kayaks for a one-day adventure near Grand Canyon?

Glen Canyon and Black Canyon, situated two and three hours away respectively, offer rental kayaks for one-day adventures. Glen Canyon provides an opportunity to hike along with kayaking, and Black Canyon is apt for those who do not have kayaking experience or prefer shorter trips. Show more

What are the requirements for kayaking in Grand Canyon?

Kayaking in Grand Canyon requires expertise and a spirit of adventure. Pre-booking through local tour operators is necessary for individual, group, and charter expeditions, sometimes up to two years in advance. Also, ensure you follow the National Park Service's rules and regulations for safety gear, waste, and environmental protection. Show more

What is the best duration for a multi-day kayak adventure in Grand Canyon?

Duration of kayak adventures in Grand Canyon could vary from 2 to 21 days, catering to a broad range of preferences and availability. However, to enjoy a multi-day experience, you ought to have both physical and mental endurance, as you will camp in the wilderness and indulge in kayaking continuously. Show more

What are the options for group kayaking in Grand Canyon?

Local tour operators offer group kayaking in Grand Canyon through regularly scheduled multi-day trips, classic expeditions lasting for two weeks, group trips, and charter expeditions, catering to different preferences. Members have to pre-book the trips through reservation, often up to two years in advance, and abide by the National Park Service's rules and regulations for environmental protection. Show more

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