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The Escalante Route stands out from other Grand Canyon routes due to its unique combo of challenging terrain, remote wilderness, and varied scenery. During this 4-day backpacking tour, we’ll watch the Grand Canyon evolve and mesmerize, every step of the way. Slot canyons, jagged cliff ledges, secluded beaches, sweeping ridgelines—these are all on the menu! The Escalante Route is perfect for experienced backpackers in search of a real challenge: all you’ve got to do is show up and keep moving because the food, the transport, the equipment, are all taken care of. This is some of the GC’s most remote, rugged, and rewarding terrain, and while you may end up physically drained, the 27-mile hike will leave you feeling recharged and inspired.

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  • World-class backpacking

    This journey uses the Tanner and New Hance trails, and even includes the 75-Mile Creek slot canyon & Papago Wall

  • Worry-free experience

    Your guides will provide you with backpacking equipment for free and prepare delicious meals in the backcountry

  • Exposed sections & exciting scrambles

    The Escalante Route is ideal for experienced and motivated backpackers with an appetite for a real challenge


By joining this guided backpacking tour of the Escalante Route, you’ll discover some of the Grand Canyon’s most exciting and remote areas! Utilizing the Tanner and New Hance Trails, the route spends much of its time near the Colorado River’s edge, but even includes the 75-Mile Creek slot canyon as well as scrambling over the Papago Wall. Your guides made sure to rid you of all organizational worries, meaning that they’ve arranged accommodation, that they’ll prepare terrific meals on trek, and that they can even provide you with backpacking equipment! If you’ve got an appetite for a demanding trail through GC’s remote wilderness, look no further than the Escalante Route.

  • Reach Flagstaff, AZ, and check into your hotel (included in the price of the tour). You will meet your guides and your team at around 6 pm for a one-hour orientation and pack-check in the main lobby of Little America Hotel. Those who requested backpacks, tents, and sleeping bags will receive them then. You will get to know your team, preview the trail, and talk safety.

    Accommodation: Little America Hotel in Flagstaff


    Flagstaff, Arizona.
  • After reconvening in the lobby of Little America Hotel at 5 am, you’ll head out to the trailhead where the hike begins with a steep 4,000 ft (1,220 m) descent toward camp at Tanner Beach. You’ll have lunch above the Red Wall with an incredible overlook to the river below. Travel today will be slow and methodical, as you manage the variables of rugged trail, steep descents, limited access to water and changing temperatures. Expect 7-9 hours of trail time (including breaks) from start to finish.

    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
    Hiking: 7.8 miles / 12.6 km
    Accommodation: Tent

    Camping on the Escalante Route
  • After a hearty breakfast, follow the trail downstream with sweeping canyon and river views before beginning a climb of 1,400 ft (430 m) to lunch with an unparalleled 180-degree view of the river. A quick descent will bring you to a creek bed floor, which you will follow out to the Colorado River and camp on Escalante Beach.

    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
    Hiking: 8.2 miles / 13.2 km
    Accommodation: Tent

    Escalante Route and three hikers
  • After a leisurely morning by the river, you’ll hike to the back of 75 Mile Creek before dropping into the slot-like canyon for a walk back in time. Farther down the river, you’ll continue up and over the Papago wall, a 35-foot (10-meter) pack-on scramble over ledges, then continue to climb before descending the Papago Slide. This day is typically among the most thrilling and rewarding ones. You’ll stop at Hance Rapids to refill water before heading up Red Canyon for camp and enjoying the sunset among its beautiful red and purple hues.

    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
    Hiking: 5.5 miles / 8.9 km
    Accommodation: Tent

    Escalante route next to a river in Grand Canyon
  • An early, before-sun-up start will move you up and into the multi-layered, multi-colored walls of the Grand Canyon as you climb almost 4,000 feet to exit the trail and return to civilization. The Hance Trail is among the burliest in the Canyon, with an intense section of uphill hiking. After topping out and celebrating as a team, you’ll return to Flagstaff. If you’re flying out today, your guides suggest scheduling flights for departure no earlier than 4:50 pm. Staying one additional night on the South Rim or in Flagstaff, and departing the following day is also a popular option.

    Meals: Breakfast and lunch
    Hiking: 5 miles / 8 km

    River along the Escalante Route
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Meet your guide

TSX has been guiding people of all ages, backgrounds, and experience levels ever since 2010. Among several other locations, they trek across Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, Mt. Whitney, and the Grand Canyon. TSX’s goal is to create an experience where individuals with limited or no backpacking skills can safely and confidently venture into the rugged beauty and tranquility of the US backcountry.
5.00 (6 reviews)
Stephanie (source: Guide’s website)

Where do I start with the Escalante Route trip? For my first time experiencing the beauty of the Grand Canyon it was absolutely breathtaking. The canyon truly evolved through every mile of the trek. Even when the sun went down you could virtually see every star in the sky, which made it hard to want to fall asleep (even though you’re physically exhausted!). Not only was it my first time at the Grand Canyon, but it was also my first-time backpack and the TSX team was a huge part of my success. Charolotte was a terrific guide who gave us endless words of encouragement and yummy meals to get us through. This trip was a mental and physical challenge, yet extremely rewarding. It without a doubt has made it into my top three accomplishments. If you are a curious adventurer who’s up for a challenge this route is for you. I’m already eager to plan out my next trip with TSX.

Scooter Sue Renovetz (source: Guide’s website)

Grand Canyon Escalante was spectacular: the physical challenge, the mental challenge, the team strength, the guides’ knowledge and encouragement. This is not just a hiking trip, this is a life changing experience. More beauty and wonder, day and night than you can imagine. Thank you, Chris and Tolman, for this awesome chance to prove my mettle.

Regan (Taco) (source: Guide’s website)

It took me this long to let the experience sink in. Grand Canyon trip of a lifetime. My wife and I did the TSX Grand Canyon Escalante Route with some friends and other team members we met as part of the group. (Go Scorpions) Chris was our guide and made us feel super at ease from the time we met on video preps when he asked us if we wanted our trek to be “spicy” all the way to the final meal on the trip home! The TSX experience started right away with plenty of prep and communication in the months leading up to the trip. My wife and I were prepared for the “hiking” but not gravity of the experience. The Escalante route was challenging, beautiful and spiritual. We saw things we would have never seen on our own and learned things about ourselves we would have never learned on our own. The only bad thing is finding the time and choosing what our next TSX adventure will be!

Anil (source: Guide’s website)

Just completed the grand canyon challenge on the Tanner-Escalante-New hance route. Dara, our, guide took incredible care of us as we went through some incredibly varied terrain. Most people visiting the canyon will never see what you get to see on this trip. Want a pristine river beach?…you got that. Some slot canyons? You got that too. Not to mention the Papago Wall and Slide. Thanks TSX for a incredible experience!

Isabella S. Ye (source: Guide’s website)

The Grand Canyon Escalante Route has been truly an amazing experience that I’ll remember for life! This is my first backpacking trip, and I’ve never carried a 30+lbs pack ever before. Looking back, I cannot believe I completed this challenge and can’t help but feeling so proud of myself. There so many things to remember for this trip – spectacular views, remote and rugged trails, awesome Team 4 Fab 5 members who supported me all the way through, and Chris who ensured my safety all along, cheered me up when I was pushing hard, and cooked awesome meals for all of us. I can’t wait to go out with TSX Challenge again for the next adventure!

Marissa Tucci (source: Guide’s website)

TSX makes backpacking accessible. I signed up for the Grand Canyon Challenge Escalante route without any experience and with no clue what to expect. TSX provided me with a tent and sleeping bag, and even accommodated my dietary restrictions on the trail. Thanks to our Guide and my amazing trail team, this was an absolutely unforgettable experience- I cant wait for my next trip!

Things to know

  • What you get on this adventure:

      • An experienced, local hiking guide with extensive knowledge of the area
      • 4-day guided backpacking trip of the Escalante Route, Grand Canyon
      • Accommodation
      • 1 night pre-trek in a hotel in Flagstaff, AZ (Little America Hotel)
      • Tents in the backcountry
      • Roundtrip transportation between Flagstaff, AZ meeting point and the trailhead
      • Opportunity to sleep on the beaches of the Colorado River
      • All meals and snacks while in the back-country
      • Backpack, tent, sleeping bag and pad if needed
      • Personalized pack-check prior to departure
      • Group gear and equipment
      • 5% NPS Recovery Fee

    What’s not included:

      • Transportation to the meeting point
      • Meals in the frontcountry
      • Guide gratuities — optional
      • Travel and medical insurance — optional
  • The Escalante Route is a 4-day backpacking journey covering circa 26.5 miles (42.3 km). The journey utilizes the Tanner and New Hance Trails for Rim to River Travel, and includes traverses of 75-Mile Creek slot canyon as well as scrambles over the Papago Wall and Slide.

    While no experience is needed, this trek is best suited for experienced backpackers or motivated individuals with an appetite to experience some of the Grand Canyon’s most remote, rugged, and rewarding terrain. Several passages along the way requite exposed hand and toe climbing.

    Keep in mind that you’ll be carrying a backpack the whole way through and that the temperatures in the Grand Canyon can vary greatly.

  • Here’s a list of the equipment you need to bring:

      • Backpack large enough to carry all the items listed (around a 30-40L bag) — can be provided upon request
      • Tent, sleeping bag & pad — can be provided upon request
      • Hiking poles — optional
      • Water bottle or hydration bladder (2L capacity)
      • Lightweight hiking boots or shoes
      • Comfortable hiking clothes
      • Spare clothes for layering
      • Waterproof rain jacket
      • Swimsuit
      • Sunhat
      • Toiletries (sunscreen, hand sanitizer, bug spray, toilet paper, etc.)
      • Headlamp or flashlight
      • Sunglasses
      • Camera — optional (but recommended)

    Dress comfortably and for the weather in clothes you can move in. We suggest bringing clothing appropriate for the season. Layers are best and don’t wear jeans.

    Make sure not to bring unnecessary items which will only make your backpacks heavier, as you’ll be carrying your backpacks with you the whole way through.

  • Your guides will apply for Grand Canyon permits through a lottery system on the 1st of the month, four months in advance of the planned trek date. Permits are typically issued within two weeks of submission. You’ll receive an email from your guides as soon as the dates for the trek are confirmed. Once confirmed, you can start making plans for transportation and pre/post-trek accommodations.

    Please refrain from booking accommodations or flights prior to the confirmation of the trip.

  • Group sizes and pricing

      • For this backpacking tour of the Escalante Route, the usual client-to-guide ratio is 5:1.
      • It takes a minimum of 2 people for this tour to operate, while the maximum is set at 9 participants.

    Backpacking the Escalante Route can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

    Min. age requirements

      • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
      • Minors younger than 18 may be permitted to join backpacking the Escalante Route on a case-by-case basis, but must be in the presence of a parent or legal guardian.

    If your group has hikers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

  • To get to Flagstaff in Arizona, the starting point of your Escalante Route backpacking trip, most people fly into Flagstaff Airport (FLG). If you’re flying into Phoenix, consider taking a shuttle or a bus to Flagstaff, or renting a car.

    Make sure to arrive in Flagstaff at least a day prior to your adventure, no later than 6 pm the evening before your trek begins. A hotel stay for that one night is included in the price of the trip, but even if you’re not staying at that hotel, you need to attend the pre-trek orientation. Typically, it’s scheduled between 6 and 7 pm at the Little America Hotel in Flagstaff.

  • We highly recommend that you cover all your bases with both emergency medical and travel insurance.

    With medical insurance, if you have an accident or medical emergency on or off the mountain, you’ll avoid paying out of pocket for costly expenses. This covers everything from hospital treatments to emergency air transportation and more. Travel insurance covers canceled flights, natural disasters and other scenarios that may interrupt your travel plans.

    We also expect you to respect local regulations and take measures to protect yourselves, your guides, and the communities you’re traveling to. If you need assistance selecting the right insurance for your group, let us know and we will be happy to help!

  • Deposits

    You can secure one of the set dates with a 30% deposit upon booking. The remaining 70% of the trip price is to be paid 90 days prior to departure, at the latest.

    Secure your early bird spot with a 10% deposit! This tour gets sold out very quickly, but with early-bird booking, you will be the first one to know about any new upcoming dates. Pick your preferred dates without the risk of your bucket list adventure selling out!

      • Only 10% of the total amount should be paid as a deposit upon booking. This deposit is non-refundable, but can be transferred to another 57hours adventure anytime in case the dates don’t suit you.
      • Once the dates are set, you can confirm your booking by paying another 20% of the total amount.
      • The final balance is due 3 months (90 days) prior to departure.


    Booking fees are non-refundable in all cases. During checkout, however, you can choose one of 57hours’ flexibility options:


      • In case of cancellation within 48 hours after booking, the amount paid is fully refundable.
      • For cancellations 60 or more days before the trip, you are eligible for a 70% refund of the trip price.
      • For cancellations 0-59 days before the trip, there is no refund.


      • In case of cancellation within 48 hours after booking, the amount paid is fully refundable.
      • For cancellations 60 or more days before the trip, you are eligible for a full refund of the trip price.
      • For cancellations 30-59 days before the trip, you are eligible for a 50% refund of the trip price.
      • For cancellations 0-29 days before the trip, there is no refund.

    Super Flexible

      • In case of cancellation within 48 hours after booking, the amount paid is fully refundable.
      • For cancellations 30 or more days before the trip, you are eligible for a full refund of the trip price.
      • For cancellations 0-29 days before the trip, you are eligible for a 50% refund of the trip price.
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