Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

North Rim Day 1

Thursday June 23, 2011
North Rim Grand Canyon National Park
North Rim Campground Site 20

First a shout out to Gin
who commented that I have
FINALLY gotten the blog
caught up and who said she was sorry we
were boondocking so I couldn’t keep
her posted.  I’m honored that
she likes to read about our adventures.

But luckily we are only boondocking
for 3 days
(that’s all North Rim would have us for-
have they heard??)
and the generator applied to
boondocking just once a day
IF your verizon wireless card
has a signal, will keep the blog going
for a few days at least!!

It was the lack of the wireless that
caused me to get so behind at
at Great Smokey Mountains NP.
And we were there boodocking, not for 3 days,
but for 7.   :-)

Back to today............

We drove back into Arizona past all the
state line liquor stores.
Serving those folks in Utah.   :-)
Back through the lovely Kaibab National Forest
into Grand Canyon National Park.
This time at the North Rim.

It sure looks different
from the South Rim entry.
This was the drive in from
Duckie’s view

North Rim Day 1 001

Looks cool in every way doesn’t it???

North Rim Day 1 002

We got to the little camping check in
station.  David took a picture of it
and Ruby on her dolly.  Not sure
why but here it is.


We took her off the dolly and
parked the dolly in the parking lot
near the camping check in. 
Then Winnona got in line
for taking on water and finally
got up to the spot.

There are often lines at Boondocking campgrounds
for water at the dump station.

One of my commenters asked about
boondocking so here’s my take on it.

In boondocking, you have no electricity
other than the aforementioned
generator.  Usually there are specific hours
in which it can be run.  Here they are 7am-9am
and 6pm to 8pm.  We try to run ours
only once a day for an hour in deference
to the tenters.  Having been one myself
I know how irritating it can be.

And you have no water or sewer hook up
so you fill up your water tank so you
can have water inside the coach
which then goes into your gray and black tanks until
you go to the dump when you leave.

The main problem in boondocking is
being able to top up your batteries
if you stay for more than a few days.

You use the batteries for lights,
fans, TV (if you use it),
your water pump.
We can run the hot water heater, the refrigerator
and the furnace on LP.

Having gotten water, we pulled on around
to the campsite and found
that it was a HUGE LONG pull in
and we would not have had to take
the dolly off the RV. 

Lesson learned. 
Take Ruby
to check the campsite FIRST
BEFORE you take the dolly off.

We pulled in, got her leveled up,
nothing to hook up :-)
So here’s Duckie’s view and a
shot of Site #20 at North Rim Campground.

Duck was apparently talking to David
and not looking out at his great view!

North Rim Day 1 171

Winnona has her sox on but
we haven’t yet set up the chairs, mat
or put the awning out.

North Rim Day 1 173

We had a quick lunch and then it
was time to get out on those trails.
We decided to take the 3 mile round trip
Transept Trail to the North Rim Lodge
and the Visitors Center
and add the half mile to Bright Angel Point
which is supposed to have a
”spectacular view of the canyon”.

We no sooner got on the
trail just a few steps from
our campsite than we found
great views with great color


Someone had set up this GREAT hammock
which was really blowin’ in the wind.
I may check this out on a later day
with a book and se
e what it’s like.  :-)


The Transept Trail had really
great big tall Ponderosa Pines.
One we got our arms around was 10’
in circumference.
And Boy did they smell good
sort of a carmel/vanilla smell.
I’m an avid tree smeller.


It is a lovely easy trail to hike
although beware that at an elevation
of 8000 feet
the down and UP are a bit more strenuous.


The views all along the trail were
really fine.  Not sure how Bright Angel
Point is going to be even better.



We came to our first view of the lodge
from just below.

North Rim Day 1 018

And as we got closer, at the base of the
lodge were these steps.


And of course we had to go investigate.
Turned out to be the Moon Room
built into the foundation with
two huge windows with great views.
They also have a Sun Room but
more about that later.


North Rim Day 1 027 

From there we walked on past the lodge
to the visitors center.


North Rim Day 1 044 

Inside we got geology refresher lessons,
learned that the Ponderosa Pine dominates
the forest at elevations between 6000 & 9000 feet.
We have seen the aspen here for the first time
on this trip
and learned that it too grows at 6000 feet in
dense groves connected through a common
root system.   Their smooth white bark is
wonderful to see.  AND we relearned that
the Grand Canyon is 1 mile deep, 277 miles long
and 10 miles across.

The visitor center has a great wooden sign.
Kudos to whoever made it.

North Rim Day 1 049

Next we went to check out the Grand Canyon Lodge.
Built in 1928, burned to the ground with only
the foundation remaining in 1932, it was reconstructed
during the winter of 1936-37 and retains its
rustic feel.


North Rim Day 1 056

Even with its high ceilings, because of its
dark timbers it is difficult to capture.
The huge windows don’t help either.

You enter into the lobby.
The dining room is on your right.
Check in on your left.
The sun room directly ahead.
And it is what is causing the light problems
in this picture of the lobby.

North Rim Day 1 058

Left side of the lobby
Notice the NO VACANCY sign.

North Rim Day 1 059

The dining room has two walls of windows
with GREAT views.


David got an amazing picture of the sunroom
in which you can even see the views out
the windows.   There are two decks
which you can access through the doors
on either side of the sunroom.


Here’s a look at the room from the windows side.
You can see Brighty in the far left corner.
More on him later.

But did you notice what most of these
people were doing??

North Rim Day 1 078

Here is the porch out the set of doors
on the right wall of the Sunroom.
Very nice place to sit


with the same great views

North Rim Day 1 072

Here is the deck out the doors on the left
where a ranger was giving a geology talk
toward the rear and at least one man
in the front was engaging in a favorite
activity of mine.

North Rim Day 1 079 

 Here is a shot of the entire deck after the
talk.  The covered objects in the back
are Telescopes.  This week is the North Rim Star Party
and every night in two different locations the Phoenix
Saguaro Astronomy Club is giving talks
and star viewing through their telescopes into the night.

North Rim Day 1 120 

We had our departure lists out by 8:00
and were checking things off.
On the road by 9:10 with the dolly
on the RV and Ruby on the dolly.


  1. Well, this looks like it is going to be fun!! More great photos:o))

    Be sure to check and see if you can find Rorik and Sherry (RV-Dreams Rally 2011)who are workcamping at the North Rim. I believe Rorik is in the general store/gift shop and Sherry is in book-keeping:o))

  2. Love the north rim. Great tour of the lodge. Thx for sharing.

  3. have been to the Grand Canyon a couple of times but not the North Rim... have added it to my list...

  4. Who knew Ponderosa pines smelled like caramel vanilla??? I never thought to smell a tree trunk :)

    As usual, stunning pictures. You're going to have a hard time topping this trip in your future travels, but I look forward to reading it!

  5. Wow ! That sure is a big ditch you're visiting. Beautiful too. Hopefully it doesn't get too hot during the middle of the day. No generator means no air conditioner. Safe travels.

  6. I have to visit the North Rim. Looks even more interesting than the South. Good reason for solar panels on the roof. We plan on doing lots of boondocking.

  7. There you go hugging those trees again. :-)

    I would definitely check out that hammock with a good book in hand!


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