- The New Hance Trail leads northward into the Grand Canyon from East Rim Drive. The route is eight miles in length and descends over 4,000 feet to Hance Rapids on the Colorado River. This track is not maintained by the National Park Service and some trail finding is necessary. Only experience canyoneers should attempt hiking this path.
Finding the trailhead will be your first exercise in navigation. The trail begins approximately one mile west of Moran Point. Walk south along the canyon rim and search for a large cairn and No Parking signs. Look for Coronado Butte north and slightly west of the cairn. As you descend into the canyon Coronado Butte remains on your left. The tread follows switchbacks as it descends the first 920 feet into the canyon. Immediately east of the ridge crest leading to Coronado Butte is the head of Red Canyon. The route turns eastward and begins to descend into the canyon.
The track follows Red Canyon about three-quarters of a mile then begins to contour the eastern side of the drainage. It leads along the crumbling redwall sandstone for slightly less than a mile before descending steeply through it along switchbacks. This descent leads northward to the bottom of Red Canyon. The New Hance Trail crosses a Red Canyon tributary and shortly afterward reaches the canyon bottom. The remaining two miles of the tread lead through Red Canyon to its confluence with the Colorado River.
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