Toroweap, Grand Canyon North Rim

Hltoppr

 
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It's been over a month since I've gotten out to do some exploring, and since it was my wife and my 8th anniversary, we decided to take the road less traveled and do a quick overnight in the FJ80.

Our destination, Toroweap, on the Arizona Strip at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, about a 6 hour (in 3FE speeds....) trip from Flagstaff.

The road to Toroweap is 60 miles one way of dirt, with no services except for a National Park Service Ranger station at the end. It's rugged, but nothing that even a stock cruiser of any genre would have problems with....actually, with the exception of tires, our Subaru could probably do it with a careful driver. O' well, this is for the views, not really the wheeling. :D

This part of the Grand Canyon is devoid of any touristas in new white sneakers, pastel golf shirts and cameras! Just the way I like it!

The Park Service has some primitive campsites (a fire ring and picnic table) with new Phoenix composting toilet facilities (Off the grid folks will know the brand name, and they're pretty nice!), but nothing else, and there was only one family from Italy within 200 yards of us.

We got in after dark, stopped to talk with the Ranger, Jim, who we found owned a 2004 Tacoma with a snorkle, OME lift, and ARB....half an hour of talking 'cruisers later we finally head to the campsite, pop the rooftop tent and fix some dinner.

About midnight we took a walk to the Canyon rim...no moon, so it's a big black void :doh: ....but the stars are incredible! :cheers:

The next morning we head back out on a couple of hikes and are treated to great views of the Canyon, unspoiled by the aforementioned tourists!

On the way back out the faithful FJ80 turns over 200K miles! Good to be on dirt when that happened! :bounce:

Hope you guys enjoy the picks! If you're not from Arizona and want a family trip the the REAL Grand Canyon, I highly recommend this!

-H-
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dmc

 
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Great pics Hltoppr.

Toroweap is a great place. It gives a better perspective of exactly how deep the Grand Canyon is. Make the trip from there up to the North Rim and you get to feel how high up the North Rim is. Good to know the Ranger is a Toyota guy. A group of Cruisers will be going through there in a few weeks.

http://expeditionportal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=32

congrats on the 200k!
thanks,
dmc
 

beno

Gihee Arakawa
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Hey Dave--

That link looks like a pretty new site based on how many threads and other stuff there are.

I like it a lot and will help in the future.

Thanks for the link.


Hltopper--you always get great pics on great trips...thanks for sharing.

Best.
-onur
Akron, OH
 

dmc

 
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'Expeditionswest' owns that site. I'd love to see it grow. I definitely see more people going that direction and think it will be nice to have it localized. Scott has a good concept going. I hope to be able to develop my own style of expedition.
dmc
 

re_guderian

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Just did this trip last weekend. Fantastic views! Was the first long trip in the cruiser (900 miles in 34 hours!). I was surprised at how good the road was. I was expecting worse. Just remote. The road in from the Fredonia side (Antelope Valley road) was better than the one going South from Colorado City (Clayhole Rd.), though a few miles longer. There was a fair amount of people there for a mid-Jan Saturday, even a Honda Element.

The cruiser ran great, even got 14+ MPG with lift, 305/70/16 MTR's, ARB, winch, rear bumper and a Yakima Load Warrior rack with crap in it. I was on cruise for most of the freeway part at 60-65 MPH, which probably helped the MPG.

Took my 2 kids and the dog. I would recommend this trip for a great view of the canyon, plus the "remoteness factor". You are at least 60 mi. from civilization, and that's using that term pretty loosely (Fredonia and Colorado City are the nearest towns). Only other place I've been that's like that is the Deep Creek Mts on the UT/NV border.

I had just downloaded the USAPhotoMaps GPS shareware program and it was awesome! It downloads all the USGS topomaps and will overlay your GPS position on them, as well as preplanned routes, etc. Nice to have tons of accurate maps available.
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Fochdog

 
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Feb 6, 2005
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I've been lucky enough to have visited Toroweap three times. Not in a Cruiser, but my now sold Taco TRD. :frown:

It is an awesome trip. I got caught in a rain storm once on the road going in. The road was slicker then snot. This was a fun drive, but you had to be very careful not to put the truck in the ditch. A self recovery with a winch would be difficult due to general lack of larger trees.

Another time we camped just west of Toroweap, near Mt. Logan, to escape the summer heat. I remember looking due west at night from pretty high up for maybe 50 or more miles and could not see a single light or sign of another person, besides the airliners above. That is remote.

Thanks for sharing!:)
 
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Wow!
Grand Canyon North Rim in January! I thought they closed the north rim for the winters. I guess there just hasn't been that much snow/rain.
 

re_guderian

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blupaddler said:
Wow!
Grand Canyon North Rim in January! I thought they closed the north rim for the winters. I guess there just hasn't been that much snow/rain.
This is about 60 miles West of the Jacob's Lake area (which IS closed in winter), and only about 4600' elevation... Still, can get pretty cold in winter though.
 

re_guderian

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bkfj40 said:
ah...nice 80 Rob ;)

beautiful scenery!!

bk
Very nice 80 :cheers: It's found a good home out West! Essentially still the same as when you sold it, just finished up the dual batteries (red tops with Hellroaring unit) which adds a level of security when you get way off the beaten path by yourself, and some of the HIR headlights and slee harness with relays for some bright lights to keep the deer off me. I tried to get rid of all the dog hair, but just gave up and got a dog instead! ;p

I keep up on the VA trails threads as the wife wants to move out there in the next few years, so I need to know there is some fun out there as well.
 

archie

 
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I have been to the south and north rim tourist sites. What makes this area more unique other than remoteness, lower elevation, and rough roads?

Whats the best seasons to visit Toroweap?
What's the minimun number of days should a person stay and what is the ideal number of days?
How long will it take to go from paved road to campsite?
What did you do once you were at the campsite?
What did you wish you brought from home?
Is it possible to hike down the canyon and how long would it take walk up?


thanks for all the travel tips!
 

re_guderian

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archie said:
I have been to the south and north rim tourist sites. What makes this area more unique other than remoteness, lower elevation, and rough roads?
Better views of the river. The canyon is less than a mile wide here, and you can look 3000' straight down (more or less, but mostly more) to the river both up and downstream. Not the sweeping panoramas that you see other places (besides what's in the photos above) but great views nonetheless. You can even hear the rapids at Lava Falls downstream. Fewer people, too. No fences, no paved walkways, no tour buses, no glass-bottomed bridges, no fees, no permits, no services, just the raw Grand Canyon.

archie said:
Whats the best seasons to visit Toroweap?
anytime but summer. and when it's dry.

archie said:
What's the minimun number of days should a person stay and what is the ideal number of days?
More than the 3 1/2 hours I spent there. I'd think a day or two would suffice for some good solitude with fantastic views.


archie said:
How long will it take to go from paved road to campsite?
2 1/2 - 3+ hours one way depending on how much dinkin' around you do, how fast you like to drive, and how much abuse your car can take. The first 50 miles (coming from Fredonia) are pretty decent road. The last 10 deserve to be taken slower for the view and the road condition.

archie said:
What did you wish you brought from home?
More film for the SLR.

The good sense to bail on my other weekend obligations so I coulda stayed longer.

archie said:
Is it possible to hike down the canyon and how long would it take walk up?
Yes, there is a trail down to Lava Falls. Don't know time or distance, though the trail is on the USGS maps. NP website may have more info.
 

Kofoed

 
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Dec 2, 2004
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That's a bitchin area. Did they rebuild the Ranger Station?

I rolled a p/u near the Mount Trumble (Bundyville) school house.

Do the Bar 10 dude ranch and the hike to the river next time. It is in the same area. You can persuade ($$) the Bar10 helicopter pilot into a tour....awesome.
 
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We used to go south of Bundyville to Whitmore landing and hike down to the bottom of the canyon. It's fun to camp on the bank of the river. There is usually a big sandbar there...
 
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The red clay dirt on those roads turns into chocolate frosting after a rain... very dangerous. And BFG ATs are useless in mud. Can also drive back past Wolf Hole that Edward Abbey mentioned.

Matt
 
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