The Best Grand Cyn Vista - You decide
Some say this is the best view from any of the Grand Canyon vistas... you decide. You start out on a paved tree-lined interpretive signed pathway. You will see pinon trees and cliff roses with other specimen trees and flora along the way including a Utah Juniper.
There are a couple spots on the north side of the pathway that you can go off path and look out across the Rim and toward Angel's Window (a somewhat square opening in the Kaibab limestone). If you get in just the right spot, you can see the Colorado River through the opening. The natural arch was caused by water seeping through the cracks, then across planes between rock beds, eventually eroding the rock from underneath.
You can opt to go north to the top of Angel's Window or continue to the tip of Cape Royal, the southernmost viewpoint on the North Rim. From the tip you are treated to a 360 degree view with the first massive thing you see being flat-topped Wotan's Throne, a broad mesa that curves to the west. To your left you will see Vishnu Temple and Freya Castle. And if you look across to the South Rim, you can catch a glimpse of the Watchtower at Desert View as well as the 12,633 foot Humphreys Peak of the San Francisco Peaks near Flagstaff. There is an interpretive sign that points out some of the landmarks.
As you make your way back you will come to the walkway that goes about 150 yards out on the peninsula to the top of the fin rock that holds Angel's Window. It's quite the place to stand due to the drop off that surrounds you on three sides (there is railing/fencing that surrounds). This fin rock is is made of Kaibab limestone..
NPS Report: Cape Royal Trail 0.6 mi. / 1.0 km round-trip; 30 minutes approximate round-trip hiking time. An easy walk on a flat, paved trail providing views of the canyon, Angels Window, and the Colorado River. Markers along the trail interpret the area's natural history. Trail begins at the southeast side of the Cape Royal parking area.
Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.
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