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Road condition Flagstaff to Grand Canyon

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Wheeling, West...
posts: 2
Road condition Flagstaff to Grand Canyon

Oh boy! My son and are flying into Flagstaff on Saturday night and are set to ride the mules to Phantom Ranch on Sunday. Looks like there is rainy/snowy weather in forecast. Will be dark by time I am driving from airport in Flagstaff. What is the road like?

After time at Grand Canyon, will spend time in Sedona. Weather looks better by mid-week.

6 replies to this topic
Uden, The...
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
posts: 51,147
reviews: 42
1. Re: Road condition Flagstaff to Grand Canyon

Why not stay Flagstaff that night? Safest way from Flag to GC village is via I40 west and az64 north.

Wheeling, West...
posts: 2
2. Re: Road condition Flagstaff to Grand Canyon

Got a cancellation on the mule ride. It leaves on Sunday morning. Could not change airfare to leave earlier.

Scottsdale, Arizona
posts: 462
reviews: 19
3. Re: Road condition Flagstaff to Grand Canyon

It's a pretty major road- well maintained and mostly straight.... Just normal night-driving somewhere you've never been. Take your time and you'll be fine. You have a GPS or phone app?

Henderson, Nevada
Destination Expert
for Flagstaff, West Yellowstone
posts: 1,964
reviews: 57
4. Re: Road condition Flagstaff to Grand Canyon

Weather can be predicted, but never a guarantee. I, too, am hoping it is not as much as predicted since I'll be hiking in the canyon this weekend.

Are you required to check in for mule trip the night before? If not, you could get up and get an early start from Flagstaff on Sunday?

If not any other option, the others are correct - it's a fairly straightforward drive. If the weather is bad, I think I'd choose the route Hwy. 181 through Flagstaff up to Valle and to AZ64 rather than take I-40 to Williams before heading north. A bit of elevation change coupled with people who don't know how to slow down on the Interstates in snowy weather makes me nervous about driving on I-40 in snow. http://goo.gl/maps/fbfLZ

Enjoy your trip! Hopefully it won't be too wet at Phantom Ranch.

Edited: 1:01 pm, February 26, 2014
tucson az
Destination Expert
for Tucson, Arizona, Northern Mexico
posts: 12,230
reviews: 58
5. Re: Road condition Flagstaff to Grand Canyon

The directions from Flagstaff to GCNP are very clear and well-marked. All roads are paved. Many here do not recommend using GPS in remote areas, and I agree. Often wrong in remote areas.

I would NOT use Hwy 180 to go to GCNP if it is snowing. The I-40/Hwy 64 route will be kept clear unless there is a major storm.

I would not go on the mule trip in the rain. That would be miserable and cold.

For the weekend coming, Mar 1-2 and following days, rain is currently predicted but not snow.

Sedona, AZ
Destination Expert
for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
posts: 39,910
reviews: 134
6. Re: Road condition Flagstaff to Grand Canyon

Double check on your mule trip check in requirements. Normally you must weigh in and get a supply bag on the evening before the ride. Your late flight arrival could disqualify you, regardless of the drive. And do be prepared for inclement weather. The forecast looks nasty.

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