Post # 17
@sienna76: Snow on the South Rim too? Jeesh, I wasn’t expecting that! I guess as a New Englander, you think desert, sun, hot….I hadn’t factored snow in at all, which thinking about it now was probably stupid.
Is it crazy/pointless to even go in December then? We always seem to visit things in the off season :/ (Niagara Falls in January, though we appreciated the view/scenery of the ice and snow)
It will be a day trip. We are driving in from Vegas, which I read is about 4-4.5 hours. I’m hoping to get to GC by 11, head back by 4. Is that really limiting myself?
Post # 18
@kmarie719: Do you guys have any desire to hike at all? If you do, I would personally do it during a spring or fall month.
Yes, 8,000 feet is going to be very cold in December so bring layers and hats/gloves. It’s not all red rock stuff at the top, it’s more like a Ponderosa Pine forest and you don’t see views unless you’re at the edge (something I did not picture until I went there!). Even in May when it was 22 degrees (maybe 60 in the day?) when I woke up from camping (and I did not bring gloves!) it was 85 down at Plateau Point.
I use this link often for climate in the west. http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/coopmap/
For the Grand Canyon Village locations (there are two which are at 8,000 feet), here are the stats for the rim for December:
HIGHS: 44.7-43.4 F
LOWS: 19.9-18.2 F
SNOW DEPTH: 1-2″
If you just want to “see it once” kind of thing, you have no interest in hiking anything, and you’re OK with driving 8-9 hours, plus several more hours for driving to see the points of interest (which are along the E Rim Drive from the village to the Watchtower), then just go do it to say you’ve seen it. That would be a very long day though!
If you see the GC with a dusting of snow, that will be a real treat. Blizzards are not unheard of though. The roads from Vegas to the South Rim are pretty sparse. Like you won’t be passing too many towns.
The main lodge will be all decked out for Christmas so that will be nice to see. People who stay there in the winter do still book months in advance.
Post # 19