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“Trip of a Lifetime!”
Review of Phantom Ranch

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Phantom Ranch
Certificate of Excellence
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
1  Thank Landon S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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269 - 275 of 410 reviews

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
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1  Thank Jessica K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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
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3  Thank Aznorran
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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
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2  Thank rifrog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 5, 2012

We visited Phantom Ranch in February 2012 for our 10th Wedding Anniversary. My wife, myself and my 14 year old son all hiked down on the South Kaibab Trail. We got a fairly early start and arrived by mid afternoon. If you aren't in shape you better rethink this hike. Do whatever you can to get your calf muscles in the best shape you can imagine. We did fine but were sore the next day. In all we stayed at Phantom Ranch for 2 nights, (stay at least 2 nights, 1 will not do this place any justice or give you enough rest time unless you are in VERY good shape). The meals available especially the hikers stew are very good. We had a cabin with sink and flush toilet and 4 bunk beds all very nice for the bottom of the Grand Canyon. The showers were clean and had plenty of hot water. The staff is under paid and over worked, they are not here to make money they are there because they love it here, TIP them!! The hike up (Bright Angel trail) was actually easier than hiking down hill, hard to believe but true, you will see. End of February was great weather for hiking, lots of ice on the Bright Angel trail be sure to have Yak Traks and hiking poles. Will hopefully return someday.

Room Tip: You aren't going here for room service, this is all about the experience. If you are looking fo...
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  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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8  Thank BossHossZZ4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 5, 2012

We are working on our bucket list and decided to take the mule ride into the Grand Canyon and stay at Phantom Ranch. It was a fantastic ride and the accomodations at the bottom were the best surprise of all. Understanding that things were be rather rustic, what we found was superb! The cabin we stayed in was comfortable, air conditioned (which we didn't expect) and we had our own bathroom (minus a shower). Remember this is at the bottom of the Grand Canyon where the temperature was 100 and everything must be carried in on mule. The food is served family style and was ample and delicious both breakfast and dinner and the staff were helpful, friendly and knowledgeable. The views were spectacular - words cannot do them justice. This is the trip of a lifetime.

Room Tip: It is hard to get a room, you must book months in advance. The cabin was very nice and had two sets...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank hulihan1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2012

After hiking 14 miles down from the North Rim this place was a most welcomed relief for my wife and I. We stayed in the old air-conditioned dorms, ten bunk beds to a dorm, with one toilet and shower each. The location was most beautiful, the accommodations were rugged and basic, the food was very good and the staff was excellent. Breakfast and dinner are served family style. A fabulous place to rest ones tired bones and soar feet from a day long strenuous hike; while enjoying a ice cold beer. A before breakfast very short hike to the river is a must for anyone who truly enjoys nature and solitude. Note that flies can be an annoyance thanks to all the mules. This is not a place for those seeking comfort and service.

Room Tip: In bunk rooms, don't pick a bed directly under the air condition vent.
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank zepal
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 13 Specialty Lodging in Grand Canyon National Park
Price Range: $49 - $138 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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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