It is certainly a WOW experience the first time you see the Grand Canyon. Sadly, at most viewpoints you have to jostle for views with hundreds of tourists. But there is another way. I took this spectacular vista for Photo Friday from a ‘secret’ lookout at Shoshone Point, which actually is not too far by car from Grand Canyon Village. If you are lucky you will have the lookout completely to yourself.
We were there at dusk in late May and a wedding was about to take place accompanied by haunting tunes from a Native American flute player, whose notes echoed across the canyon.
It feels like you can see every nook and cranny from here…a never-ending series of brightly striated buttes, cliffs and plateaus. You can see parts of the Colorado River in the distance as well as Horseshoe Mesa and the Grandview Trail in the east and the South Kaibab Trail which snakes its way to Skeleton Point.
How to get to Shoshone Point
From Grand Canyon Village, take Desert View Drive (also called East Rim Drive or Arizona 64) east toward Cameron. Just east of Mile Marker 244 is a parking area on the north. It is unmarked. The trail, which is actually a dirt road, begins on the other side of the locked gate. It is a mile’s easy walk along this road through aromatic Ponderosa pines to the canyon’s rim. Just beyond a picnic area, Shoshone Point is a finger of rock jutting out into the canyon. There are no guard rails and it is a very, very long way down so take great care.
Facilities at Shoshone Point
There is a picnic area, with tables, grills and restrooms, which can be used with a permit during the tourist season (mid-May through mid-October). In the off-season, the restrooms are locked and use of picnic facilities is not permitted. There is no water available so take plenty with you.
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