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“well worth it!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Phantom Ranch

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Phantom Ranch
2.0 of 5 Ranch   |   North Kaibab Trail, South Rim, bottom of Grand Canyon, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ 86023   |  
Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“well worth it!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2012

We are 56 and 53. We knew it would be a shlep but we sort of practiced for a year and it was terrific! Hiked the S.Kaibab down on a cold October morning. It was warm by the time we got to the river. Stayed overnite at the ranch dorms (comfy enuf after the long hike!), and walked back up Brighty's trail to the south rim. Amazing hikes and amazing being down there. Even hiked a bit up the North Kaibab late in the day and it was a whole separate kind of beautiful. The ranger shows were great as was the ranch food and canteen. We'll never forget it!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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263 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (57)
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New York City, New York
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
70 helpful votes 70 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 30, 2012

I arrived at Phantom Ranch by mule, the only other way is to walk in, so by design it's a pretty exclusive world. The cabins themselves are what could be described as rustic and have only a sink and toilet -- the showers are in a separate building with towels provided (you don't need to carry them down).

It really feels like another world, maybe Brigadoon, because although there is electricity there is no real contact with the outside world. You can put down that Blackberry with no guilt! After arriving (and totally exhausted), we took a walk to the nearby river and took in the spectacular. there is a quiet comraderie with everyone you pass knowing that you've done something spectacular and made it to the bottom.

Don't expect luxury, that's not what you are there for -- the mattresses aren't great and the steak dinner was just about raw (I know, I know some people love it) -- but who the heck cares?

We signed up 4 months in advance and were apparently lucky to get in, so if you haven't reserved in time, still give it a try.

Room Tip: Get a cabin if you can.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SALEM
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2012

We decided we wanted to try to get a cabin at Phantom Ranch at the spur of the moment during a trip to Sedona. People that tell you they book a year in advance aren't kidding! However, we called them anyway and they put us on a waiting list for the next morning. When we called we were happily surprised that they had one available! Must have been the cold weather on the rim that scared people away but we lucked out! We had to pull ourselves together and drive from Sedona to the Canyon and hike down the same day! We took the Kaibab trail down and got there with five minutes to spare before the 5:00 seating for dinner. We didn't have a choice but understood later that the 6:30 stew seating was already filled up. The steak dinner was more than adequate albeit a bit spendy ($44.00 per person), breakfast was good and the lunches for the hike out were more than adequate. The family style seating is fun but you are only given 45 minutes to eat so beware if you are a slow eater! They also offer wine and beer but plan to spend a bit for it.

The cabin was very cozy with minimal amenities (a bed, nightstand, alarm clock, small table, toilet and cold running water.) The shower house had plenty of hot water and towels.

We only had the one night as we had to hike out on the Bright Angel trail and return to Sedona the next day. The hike out was long but so worth every step of it.

I would highly recommend this trip to anyone who can endure the 7.5 miles down and over 9 miles out but definitely think about more than one night so you can explore the area around Phantom Ranch and let your legs rest for a while.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Hartford, Connecticut, United States
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2012

*This review is for the meals. My group stayed at the nearby campground, but were able to reserve meals at the ranch.

Phamtom Ranch is in the middle of the grand canyon. The nearest road is 7.1 miles away via the grueling South Kaibab trail. It is the only dining option inside the canyon and good luck if you don't have reservations! Although, you could buy candy bars and such if you were really desperate.

The food is hearty and filling, even for the famished hiker. For dinner, they served stew and vegetarian chili, along with cornbread, chocolate cake, vegetables, tea and coffee, all in ample supply. They also had a steak option. The lunches, were just as fulling. I ate my lunch on the hike out and could not finish it.

The sweetest thing (beside the chocolate cake) was that I did not have carry the meal in on my back, saving my knees and blistered feet.

Getting the reservations was a bit tricky. They were all filled up the first time we called. However, we were persistent and found a number of spots actually opening up in the two weeks immediately before our embankment into the canyon.

Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tel Aviv, Israel
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2012

I loved Phantom Ranch and had such a great time meeting other travellers and just hanging out with people. It really reminded me of summer camp! After a long hike down into the canyon, this is the perfect place you'd want to stay at. It's quiet, beautiful, has great food and very friendly.

The vegetarian chilli is delicious as is the filling breakfast. You don't need to buy a packed lunch, it's very expensive. The dorms are heated/air conditioned with a shower, toilet and sink. The bunk beds aren't too bad at all. Remember to bring a flashlight! We didn't have one and it was really hard to get around at night using our mobile phones.

Enjoy! I'm very jealous you're going.

Room Tip: Bring a flashlight and some flip flops/sneakers to walk around in!
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tucson, Arizona
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2012

We hiked down the South Kaibab and up the Bright Angel trail. We spent one night at Phantom Ranch. I would not trade one second. We have tried for years to get a reservation at the Ranch and finally got through on November 1 2011. So we waited an entire year for the trip and the weekend we hiked a cold front came through. Although it was cold (4 degrees the morning of our hike down), it was sunny and turned out to be great hiking weather. I was so excited to actually get to Phantom Ranch! When we reached the Colorado River, it was fabulous. The staff is wonderful! We each stayed in a dorm room that was comfortable and warm. Fresh clean towels and soap are provided. The food is fine--we had dinner, breakfast and picked up a bagged lunch. They also sell beer! We celebrated with a Grand Canyon beer when we arrived. There are a couple of ranger presentations which were fun and educational. I would recommend this to anyone.

Room Tip: There were people in our cabin who had called that very morning to see if a reservation had opened u...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ri
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012

I had wanted to hike into / out of the Grand Canyon for 40+ years and finally made it 2 weeks ago. The weather was perfect for both days, and the experience made the leg pains following the hike all worthwhile. The Phantom Ranch meals were great (steak dinner @ night; full breakfast the next morning). The dorms are so-so, but what do you expect sleeping in a bunkhouse with 9 other guys? If I want a great room, I'll go to a 4 Seasons somewhere. The staff was great; very welcoming and encouraging. They know they work in a special place and want to be sure that each visitor has a good experience.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Phantom Ranch

Address: North Kaibab Trail, South Rim, bottom of Grand Canyon, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ 86023
Location: United States > Arizona > Grand Canyon National Park
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 22 Specialty Lodging in Grand Canyon National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Phantom Ranch 2*
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Phantom Ranch is a historic oasis nestled at the bottom of Grand Canyon. It is on the north side of the Colorado River tucked in beside Bright Angel Creek. Phantom is the only lodging below the canyon rim. The Ranch can only be reached by mule, by foot or by rafting the Colorado River. Overnight accommodations at Phantom Ranch consist of dormitory spaces and cabins. Cabins and dormitories are heated in winter and cooled during the summer months. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Phantom Ranch Hotel Grand Canyon National Park
Phantom Ranch Grand Canyon
Grand Canyon Phantom Ranch

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