Trail Courtesy Practices That Leave No Trace

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The South Kaibab, Bright Angel, and North Kaibab Trails (known as the Corridor Trails) meet at the bottom of the canyon near the only bridges that span the Colorado River. Together, they create the popular cross-canyon "Corridor".

The Corridor Trails provide a diversity of recreational opportunities for hikers, backpackers, mule riders, and runners. With so many of us participating in a wide range of activities, it really helps when we are considerate of each other.

Being considerate of others is central to Leave No Trace.

The following guidelines build on Leave No Trace principles, help protect Grand Canyon's plants, animals and history, and enhance everyone's experience:
Why? Traveling with at least one other person helps ensure your safety in the event of accident or injury.
  • When traveling in a group, stay together or partner up.
  • When traveling alone have a support plan with check-in times.
Why? Proper disposal of human waste prevents water pollution, avoids the negative implications of someone else finding it, and minimizes the possibility of spreading disease.
  • Plan ahead, locate the restrooms on the Corridor Trails Map before you start down a trail.
  • Or, deposit human waste in catholes. Go 200 feet (61m) from water, trail, and campsite.
  • Dig a 6-inch (15 cm) deep hole, 4-6 inches (10-15 cm) in diameter. Bury your waste.
  • Use resealable plastic bags to carry out your toilet paper and tampons.

Why? Yielding to mules helps keep all trail users safe. When frightened, mules may act unpredictably.
  • When you encounter mules, follow the directions of the mule wrangler.
  • Otherwise, step to the side of the trail that is away from the edge and remain quiet and still.
Why? Uphill travelers are often fatigued and working hard to maintain their balance and pace.
  • If you're descending, slow down and yield to uphill travelers.
  • Some uphill travelers may see you and decide to stop or step off the trail — it's their call.
Why? Slowing down and asking to pass maintains a friendly atmosphere and ensures safe passage.
  • Communicate in a clear quiet tone. Do not yell.
  • Do not expect slower travelers to move out of your way.
  • Keep in mind, some hikers may not speak English and may not understand you.
Why? Storing gear along the trail attracts wildlife seeking a handout, can look like litter, and degrades the natural environment.
  • Gear includes extra clothes, equipment, food, and trash.
  • Bring a small pack or stuff sack in which to carry your extras.

Why? Litter left in the canyon takes years to decompose. Packing out all of your trash helps to preserve the natural environment.
  • Place your trash in resealable plastic bags that you can carry in your pack.
  • Pack out everything you pack into Grand Canyon.
Why? Being quiet and respecting those who seek serenity helps everyone enjoy the park.
  • Enjoy Grand Canyon's natural sounds, they are a key part of the experience.
NPS photos by Victoria Allen, Kim Besom, KJ Glover, Nicole Koehlinger and Michael Quinn. Wrangler silhouette photo courtesy of Sherry Zakrazek.

Last updated: October 3, 2017

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