|NATIONAL PARKS QUICKLINKS|
Backpacker Magazine – September 2008
The Civilian Conservation Corps is turning 75—so celebrate right by hiking its classics.
Grand Canyon NP, AZ
Hike a Cliff-Hugging Trail
Between 1933 and 1936, 200 men from Company 818, one of seven CCC crews in the park, chipped out riverside hiking trails as wealthy guests relaxed piano-side at Phantom Ranch. Trek on their handiwork along the nine-mile Clear Creek Trail, with gobsmacking views of Zoroaster Temple and steep red-walled cathedrals. Pick up the Clear Creek Trail in the narrow canyon just north of Phantom Ranch (it's a one-to-two-day hike in from either rim; try Bright Angel, or the North or South Kaibab Trails). Climb three-quarters of a mile to a stone wall overlook and bench perched 550 feet above the Ranch. Continue east over the Tonto Platform and look for campsites about 2.5 miles in, just past Sumner Wash, or continue 6.8 miles to campsites along Clear Creek. (928) 638-7888; nps.gov/grca
An ice-cold Tecate at the Phantom Ranch Canteen pairs well with its Hiker's Stew. (888) 297-2757; grandcanyonlodges.com
From Phoenix, take I-17 north 136 miles to Flagstaff. Follow US 180 81 miles northwest to the Bright Angel trailhead.