Information and Services
A major metropolis it’s not, but you can find most everything you need here in the Grand Canyon region’s most populous area. And anyway, isn’t the whole idea of a vacation to get away from everyday life?
Cell Phones, Wi-Fi, and GPS
Don’t count on your cell phone if you’re hiking below the rim: It’s unlikely that you’ll get a signal inside the canyon. Service may also be spotty on the rim and as you travel around the Grand Canyon region.
Some of the lodges have Wi-Fi service in their lobbies and cafeterias, and there’s a Wi-Fi hot spot on the patio at Park Headquarters. Computers with Internet access are available for public use at the village’s community library (928/638-2718) and in the research library at park headquarters. If you can’t bear feeling disconnected, you may be happier lodging in Tusayan, where several motels and a couple of cafés offer Internet hookups.
The park has made a number of infrastructure changes over the past few years, and the GPS mapping features of some vehicles haven’t caught up. Don’t rely on your vehicle’s GPS to navigate. The maps in The Guide and the park’s brochure—a ranger will hand both of these to you at the entrance station—are up-to-date and accurate.
Laundry and Showers
A coin-operated laundry and showers are available at the Camper Services building near the entrance of Mather Campground. Hours vary by season, and the current hours are posted on-site.
The Kaibab Learning Center (928/638-6333, 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Mon.-Fri.) offers day care services for infants and children up to 12 years old, when space is available. Immunization records must be provided.
Pets are not permitted in lodges, on shuttle buses, or on hiking trails below the rim. The only exception is for service animals, and if you want to take a service animal below the rim, you must first check with the Backcountry Information Center. Pets are permitted in the village and campgrounds but must be leashed at all times.
You can board your dog or cat for the day or overnight at the kennel (928/638-0534, 7:30 a.m.-5 p.m. daily), located off Rowe Well Road, west of Maswik Lodge. Reservations are recommended, and proof of vaccination is required. To pick up your pet later than 5 p.m., make arrangements with Xanterra Fire and Safety (928/638-2631).
An alternative to boarding your pet at the canyon is to leave Spot or Fluffy in Williams, 60 miles south of the canyon, or Flagstaff, 90 miles away. Canyon Pet Resort (928/214-9324, www.canyonpetresort.com) in Flagstaff offers day care and overnight boarding, with optional extras such as walks, treats, or a cage-free executive suite. In Williams, Grand Canyon Railway’s air-conditioned Pet Resort (800/843-8724) services are available to the general public as well as to visitors staying at the adjacent RV park or riding the train.
The National Park Service doesn’t endorse any particular religious group or message, but a number of local congregations offer services inside the park and in nearby communities. Schedules of services are posted at Grand Canyon Visitors Center, Verkamp’s Visitors Center, Mather Campground, Shrine of the Ages, and at the information kiosk near the post office.
Lost and Found
If you leave something behind in a guest room or lodge, contact Xanterra’s offices (928/638-2631). For all other lost items, call park administration or complete a lost property report online or in writing (Lost and Found Office, Grand Canyon National Park, P.O. Box 129, Grand Canyon, AZ 86023, 928/638-7798, www.nps.gov/grca/planyourvisit/lost-found.htm). Take found items to any of the park’s visitors centers.
Dial 911 for emergency care (9-911 from lodge rooms). Hikers can find emergency phones at ranger stations and along corridor trails: on Bright Angel Trail at Mile-and-a-Half Resthouse, Three-Mile Resthouse, and River Resthouse, and on the South Kaibab Trail at its junction with the Tonto Trail. Inner canyon ranger stations are located at Cottonwood Campground (summer only), Indian Garden, and Phantom Ranch. Emergency phones are connected to a 24-hour dispatch center and do not require coins. If your situation requires search-and-rescue services, you will be charged expenses.
For urgent medical or dental care, contact the North Country Grand Canyon Clinic Community Health Center (928/638-2551, fax 928/638-2598, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. daily mid-May-mid-Oct., reduced hours mid-Oct.-mid-May). The clinic, located south of the village on Clinic Road, can be reached from Center Road or from Highway 64.
© Kathleen Bryant from Moon Grand Canyon, 5th Edition