Grand Canyon National Park: Exploring the North and South Rims

Experience Sedona’s red rocks and get a unique perspective of the Grand Canyon as you explore both the North and South Rims, and fly above the Colorado River for a bird’s-eye view!
Rating (4.93)
Program No. 2804RSBLOG
7 days
Starts at

At a Glance

Carved from millions of years of erosion, the Grand Canyon has countless layers of history just waiting to be discovered. Explore the hidden treasures inside this national park from ancient fossils to the Marble Canyon, all alongside the local experts who know them best. Witness a part of the United States that has been preserved for millennia on excursions to both the North and South Rims, and gain a deeper understanding of the indigenous people who first inhabited this land. On a journey through this epic national park and Sedona’s stunning landscapes, learn the story of the region’s geological beginning while standing in awe of this sea of sandstone.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to two miles daily on varied terrain. On South Rim, quarter-mile walk between lodging and dining. Elevations of 7,000-8,000 feet

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Experience the incredible opportunity to fly over both rims aboard a fixed-wing aircraft, if you choose.
  • Discover one-of-a-kind vistas as you explore the jewels of Sedona, the Grand Canyon South Rim and the serene North Rim when you spend a night at its historic lodge.
  • Venture into Marble Canyon and the Vermilion Cliffs—two of the Grand Canyon’s lesser-known gems—and walk across the historic Navajo Bridge spanning 600 feet across the Colorado River.

General Notes

Grand Canyon overflight at added cost.
Featured Expert
All Experts
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Jeff Strang
Jeff Strang's knowledge of the environment stems from over 40 years of hiking, paddling, and photography in the outdoors, his extensive experience as a naturalist, as well as from his education at the University of Oregon and Lewis and Clark Law School. In 1987, Jeff filed a precedent-setting lawsuit against Oregon polluters under the Clean Water Act. Jeff has been leading Road Scholar programs since 2002. In his free time, Jeff enjoys biking to work, hiking, kayaking, outdoor photography and studying geology.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

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Mike Young
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Stewart Lasseter
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Jeff Strang
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Chuck Wahler
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Norm Geiger
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Bruce Banker
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Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Carving Grand Canyon: Evidence, Theories, and Mystery
by Ranney, Wayne
Ranney explains how rivers in general can physically carve canyons, looks chronologically at the numerous theories that have been presented by successive generations of geologists regarding the Grand Canyon's formation, and describes a plausible sequence of geologic events that could create such a landscape. Numerous color photographs, detailed illustrations, and maps are provided. Annotation ©2005 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR 160pp; 2nd edition 2012.
The Scalpel and the Silver Bear: The First Navajo Woman Surgeon Combines Western Medicine and Traditional Healing
by Alvord, Lori
The first Navajo woman surgeon combines western medicine and traditional healing. A spellbinding journey between two worlds, this remarkable book describes surgeon Lori Arviso Alvord's struggles to bring modern medicine to the Navajo reservation in Gallup, New Mexico—and to bring the values of her people to a medical care system in danger of losing its heart. 204 pp
Introduction to Grand Canyon Geology
by Price, L Greer
This overview of Grand Canyon geology is perfect for the first-time visitor or the seasoned Grand Canyon traveler. Chapters cover the basic priciples of geology, the history of geological exploration at Grand Canyon, the canyon's structural features, and the Colorado River. Includes over 70 photos and illustrations, an index, and glossary. 63pp
Unquenchable: America's Water Crisis
by Glennon, Robert
In the middle of the Mojave Desert, Las Vegas casinos use billions of gallons of water for fountains, pirate lagoons, wave machines, and indoor canals. Meanwhile, the town of Orme, Tennessee, must truck in water from Alabama because it has literally run out. Robert Glennon captures the irony—and tragedy—of America’s water crisis in a book that is both frightening and wickedly comical. Unquenchable reveals the heady extravagances and everyday inefficiencies that are sucking the nation dry.
The Exploration of the Colorado River and Its Canyons
by Powell, John Wesley
Full text of Powell's 1,000-mile expedition down the fabled Colorado in 1869. Superb account of terrain, geology, vegetation, Indians, famine, mutiny, treacherous rapids, mighty canyons. 240 illustrations. 432pp
Living at the Edge: Explorers, Exploiters, and Settlers of the Grand Canyon Region
by Anderson, Michael F
A comprehensive look at the pioneer history of the Grand Canyon Region, from its earliest residents to the creation of the national park at the end of the pioneer era (circa 1920). Included are close to two hundred historic photographs, many never published before, and 12 custom maps of the region. 184pp
The Man Who Walked Through Time: The Story of the First Trip Afoot Through the Grand Canyon
by Fletcher, Colin
The remarkable classic of nature writing by the first man ever to have walked the entire length of the Grand Canyon. 256pp
Breaking Into the Current: Boatwomen of the Grand Canyon
by Teal, Louise
This book profiles eleven of the first full-season Grand Canyon boatwomen, weaving together their various experiences in their own words. Breaking Into the Current is a story of romance between women and a place. Each woman tells a part of every Canyon boatwoman's story: when Marilyn Sayre talks about leaving the Canyon, when Ellen Tibbets speaks of crew camaraderie, or when Martha Clark recalls the thrill of white water, each tells how all were involved in the same romance. All the boatwomen have stories to tell of how they first came to the Canyon and why they stayed. As river guides in love with the Canyon and their work, these women have followed their hearts. 178pp
Volcanoes of Northern Arizona - Sleeping Giants of the Grand Canyon Region
by Duffield, Wendell A
Just south of the Grand Canyon lies a range of volcanic mountain including Mt. Humphreys, the highest point in Arizona. These mountains encompassing Sunset Crater and the San Francisco Peaks, collectively make up the San Francisco Volcanic Field. This book provides, for the first time, a popular look at the fiery origin of these volcanic features. With magnificent aerial photographs, original geologic illustrations, and detailed road logs to many of the key features, this book is an indispensable tool for the traveler, the educator, and all that are interested in the remarkable landscape of northern Arizona. 68pp
An Introduction to Grand Canyon Prehistory
by Coder, Christopher M.
People have inhabited Grand Canyon for the past twelve thousand years. Evidence of their lives exists throughout the canyon; but it is up to their ancestors and archaeologists to interpret those remains for us. This book provides a popular look at the architecture, art, and tools of prehistoric Puebloan peoples, as well as information about modern-day Native American tribes. With illustrations and color photographs.

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