Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument is located in Arizona in the northwest corner of the Grand Canyon. With over a million acres of land to explore, the size is nearly equal to Grand Canyon National Park, though this monument is little-known. The national monument was established in 2000 by Presidential Proclamation. Three ecoregions meet at the national monument creating an expansive region of remote land. These three ecoregions are the Colorado Plateau, Mohave Desert, and the Basin and Range Province.
This expansive national monument has many different areas to explore. Many popular routes and loop roads have scenic vistas and historical sites to explore. The Grand Gulch Mine Loop leads visitors to the ruins of a mining operation. Twin Point Scenic Grand Canyon Overlook greets those who make the journey with breathtaking views of the Grand Canyon. At night, the dark sky is free of light pollution making the area an optimal location for stargazing.
The roads within the national monument are rocky with tight turns. Four-wheel-drive vehicles or UTVs are highly recommended. It is discouraged to attempt travel on these roads in a standard car or with an RV. Even with the most well-equipped car, visitors should come with spare tires, a full tank of gas, tools in case they get stuck, and extra food and water. Many areas at this remote park have no cell phone service while in other areas it’s spotty at best.
Located at the northwest corner of the Grand Canyon in Arizona, visitors will find Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument. The national monument is a scenic area with over a million acres of land to explore.
Four-wheel drive, high-clearance vehicles are highly encouraged. Some roads are so rough and have extremely tight turns that only UTVs can use them. It is not recommended to bring two-wheel-drive vehicles or RVs to the national monument.
Be prepared to head into a remote desert. Bring extra food, water, a full tank of gas, and a spare tire or two in case you get a flat. It isn’t uncommon for even the best equipped vehicle to become stuck. It’s advised to bring tools such as a shovel to dig out. There is no phone service in many areas and it is spotty at best.
About 50 miles northeast of the national monument in Hurricane, Utah is the St. George/Hurricane KOA. To access the campground, do not use the address. Instead, follow the instructions available on their website. The address is not GPS friendly and you could be led astray.
The KOA can accommodate RVs up to 45 feet in length. Electric hookups, WiFi, and cable TV are amenities offered to make your stay more comfortable. There is a pool that is open from April to October to take a dip in on hot spring and summer days.
There are backcountry campsites only at Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument. These campsites are not designated and they require a four-wheel-drive vehicle to access. It is not recommended to bring RVs or trailers.
There are many different types of wildlife that may be seen throughout the Grand Canyon-Parashant region. Slow-moving desert tortoises may cross your path, making you stop to watch as they clear the roadway. Cattle may be in some areas from the privately owned land near the edges of the monument. Hazardous species of wildlife are common to the area too, such as rattlesnakes, Gila monsters, and scorpions. While these animals are fun to see, do not touch the wildlife and keep a safe distance.
Grand Canyon Parashant National Monument is considered a dark sky park, far from light pollution for stunningly clear views of the night sky. See dazzling nighttime displays of stars and planets light up the dark, night sky. Identify and point out the different constellations, see a shooting star, and enjoy the remote quiet and calm under the twinkling starlight.
Another popular scenic drive, the Twin Point Scenic Grand Canyon Overlook route has tight turns. A high-clearance four-wheel-drive vehicle is strongly recommended. A full tank of gas is necessary for this rugged and rocky 150-mile road. Twin Points has many beautiful views into the Grand Canyon, making it well worth the trek.
The Mt. Trumbull Scenic Loop Drive is one of the most popular drives in the area. A four-wheel-drive vehicle with all-terrain tires is recommended. There are many stunning views and historical points of interest along this route. A replica of the Mt. Trumbull Schoolhouse is in the western end of the loop. Other points of interest along the route include the Historic Sawmill Site and Nixon Spring and the Mt. Logan Overlook.
Due to high temperatures in the summer months, this drive is recommended from October to April. Along this route, you’ll see what is now a dry lake, canyons with fossils in the rock walls, and the springs at Pakoon and Tassi. Water from the still dripping springs should not be consumed without first boiling.
The Grand Gulch Mine route leads visitors to the ruins of mining operations. All high clearance, four-wheel-drive vehicles should be able to reach this site year-round except after heavy rains during monsoons. These rough roads are scenic and lead down to the mine ruins. Visitors are welcome to venture inside the bunkhouse and explore the site.