Grandstaff Trail

The Grandstaff Trail is the new name for the Negro Bill Canyon Trail. I suppose the name was changed for political correctness. However, I get many campers who ask about the trail by the old name. Also the BLM brochure about the trails still call it the Negro Bill Canyon Trail.

This trail is on BLM land so Aria got to enjoy the trail as much as we did. The trail is about 2.2 miles one way. At the end is the Morning Glory Bridge and it is the source of a stream we crossed about six times. The Morning Glory Bridge is the 6th largest natural rock span at 243 feet long. Bring plenty of water. I would suggest 2 liters per person. Extra if you have a canine friend along. However, Aria seemed to like drinking from the stream more than from her bowl. Also remember to allow plenty of time. The sun moves from one side of the canyon to the other, so there is no benefit of hiking early or later in the day. Perhaps noon may not be best as the sun would be positioned to provide the least amount of shade. Also remember that you need to hike back the 2.2 miles that you hiked in.

The trail is not an easy trail. We used our hiking sticks quite a bit. The trail is not as well-marked as others we have hiked. That made it more of an adventure. I felt like I was blazing the trail myself. There were times that I think I actually was. We would come to a dead-end only to backtrack and find where we took a wrong turn. After the second stream crossing, I gave up carrying Aria over the stream and just let her get wet and full of sand. The trail climbs over rocks and along ledges. Sand is everywhere and adds to the trail’s challenges. Although we did not make it to the end of the trail, I got close enough to get a few pictures of the Morning Glory Bridge. I shall return with Aria and see the pool of water that is the source of the stream.

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