Grand Canyon National Park, North Rim
The Cape Royal Trail is a short, flat, paved hike exposing you to dazzling vistas of the Grand Canyon from the viewpoints of Cape Royal and Angels Window
Hiking the Cape Royal Trail
The Cape Royal Trail is a short hiking route on the North Rim of Arizona’s Grand Canyon National Park. It certainly makes up for what it lacks in distance with its spectacular vistas.
The trail is easy and, therefore, suitable for visitors of all ages and fitness levels. It provides a unique and unforgettable perspective of the Grand Canyon landscape.
Moreover, this trail offers access to two of the best viewpoints on the North Rim – Cape Royal and Angels Window.
Where is the Cape Royal Trail?
The Cape Royal Trail is on the North Rim of Arizona’s Grand Canyon National Park. It is at the end of a 19.8 mile (31.9 km) scenic drive from its junction with Arizona State Route 67. Check out the exact location of the trailhead and Rim vista on this map.
Where to park for the Cape Royal Trail?
To access the trail, visitors can park at the Cape Royal parking lot, located immediately adjacent to the trail’s starting point. The precise location is highlighted on this map with an orange ‘P’.
How to get to the Cape Royal trailhead?
Join Arizona State Route 67 and head south for 41.26 miles. Then turn left onto Cape Royal Road and continue for 5.41 miles (8.7 miles). Turn right, continuing on Cape Royal Road for 14.52 miles (23.37 km). Here the road ends at the Cape Royal car park.
Parking Lot Location Details
Cape Royal Trail Description
From the parking lot, the Cape Royal Trail heads south along a flat, paved trail flanked by numerous species of flora, including juniper and piñon trees.
Shortly, the dramatic natural arch, Angels Window, comes into sight through gaps in the bushes on the left. Soon after, a short, easy side trail leads off to the left and onto the top of Angel’s Window.
Visitors enjoy what can only be described as a mesmerising view of the canyon off to the east. The experience gives one the sense of floating above the canyon. Thankfully, guard rails surround the top of the arch to keep visitors safe.
However, if you fear heights, walking out onto the top of Angel’s Window should probably be avoided.
Return to the Cape Royal Trail, turn left and follow for approximately 300 metres to the trail’s end at Cape Royal, the southernmost viewpoint on the North Rim.
What can you see from Cape Royal?
From the 2401.8 metres (7880 feet) vista at Cape Royal, visitors witness stunning panoramic views of the Grand Canyon and the Colorado River. Some notable landmarks visible from Cape Royal include:
- Vishnu Temple: a massive rock formation that rises over 2296 metres (7533 feet) above sea level, named after the Hindu God, Vishnu.
- Wotan’s Throne: A distinctive butte that towers over the canyon named after the Norse God, Wotan.
In addition to these landmarks, visitors can also see the colourful layers of rock that make up the canyon walls and the Colorado River’s winding path as it flows through the canyon floor.
Cape Royal Trail – Our Thoughts
The Cape Royal Trail may only be short, but it certainly packs in the wow factor regarding the views on offer. Moreover, it is only a short distance south of the Cape Final trailhead, so you may wish to experience both hikes while visiting.
The views from Angels Window and Cape Royal are some of the most breathtaking and memorable that the North Rim offers, making this hike an absolute must for visitors to the North Rim.
Cape Final Trail – Q & As
How long is the Cape Royal Trail?
0.78 miles (1.26 km)
How long does the Cape Royal Trail take?
Approximately 1 hour
Is this a challenging hike?
No. The trail is relatively flat and paved, making this a relatively easy hike.
Is the trail wheelchair accessible?
Yes. Cape Royal Trail is wheelchair accessible, making it one of the few trails in the Grand Canyon that can accommodate people with mobility impairments.
When is the best time of year to visit the Grand Canyon North Rim?
The best time of year to visit the Grand Canyon North Rim depends on what you’re looking for. Generally speaking, the North Rim is less crowded than the more popular South Rim, offering cooler temperatures and diverse flora and fauna.
Summer (June to August): This is the busiest time of year at the North Rim, with warm temperatures and long daylight hours.
Fall (September to November): This is a great time to visit the North Rim, with cooler temperatures and fewer crowds. The fall foliage is also stunning, with vibrant yellows, oranges and reds.
Also, remember that the North Rim is closed to vehicular traffic from the beginning of December until the middle of May. Keep tabs on the National Park Service website for the exact opening dates.
Are dogs allowed at the Grand Canyon North Rim?
Pets, including dogs, are allowed on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, but they are subject to some restrictions to ensure the safety of both pets and wildlife.
Here are some essential rules and regulations regarding pets on the North Rim:
- Pets must be kept on a leash with a maximum length of 6 feet.
- Pets are not allowed on any park trails or off-trail areas except for the Bridle Trail.
- Pets are not permitted in any park buildings, except for service animals assisting visitors with disabilities.
- Owners are responsible for cleaning up after their pets and disposing of waste in trash receptacles.
It’s important to note that the North Rim can get hot during the summer, so bringing plenty of water and shade for your pet is essential. Additionally, pets can disturb wildlife, so keeping them on a leash and under control is vital.
Have you experienced this trail?
If you have, please share your experience with our readers and us. Please let us know if you have any questions we still need to answer, and we will get back to you as quickly as possible.
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