We backpacked from the North Rim to the ranch in June of 2012. As you can guess the weather was quite hot. We started our hike from the North Rim at 5am when it was chilly and made our way down towards the ranch. Making sure we got to the ranch in time for our steak dinner. As other reviews say you have to 1. make sure you make your reservations EARLY. We camped at Bright Angel campground and we could only get it for one night and we booked in January. 2. Order the Steak dinner after a 14 mile hike down and eating cliff bars and gorb this was a delight.3. Drink a beer LOL you deserve it..The ranch itself reminded me of a cowboy movie..It was really cool. I wish I could of enjoyed it more but I had severely blistered feet from the hike down(always break in your hiking boots) and walking was painful, but the rest of my group enjoyed hiking to the river and cooling off in the creek. That was a joy since it was over 100 degrees. Our campground was very roomy, we all slept on tarps out in the open and I would of not did it any other way. The stars were endless, the sounds were so peaceful. We got up early the next morning 3am and packed up and started our hike back up the North Rim. It was a very strenous, hot hike and we made sure we got up to roaring springs before the heat of the day and then we hunkered down in the shade and rested for a few hours,so we wouldn't get heat stroke. We finished our hike in the dark, sore,proud of our accomplishment. Looking back at my experience. I would want to stay 2 night to rest our bodies more and to explore more of the Phantom Ranch area. Don't miss Phantom Ranch, take a mule, take a hike but find a way to the Phantom Ranch and you will not be sorry.