Located 2.5 miles from the Grand Canyon Visitor Center, between Mather Point and Grandview Point, Yaki Point offers some of the most distinctive views of the Grand Canyon available along the East Rim. Here you will be able to see portions of the Grand Canyon that simply are not available from other, even-more popular stops like Yavapai Point. The views on display from Yaki Point include such landmarks as Bright Angel Trail, Cremation Creek, Tonto Trail, and O’Neill Butte. The sunsets and sunrises here are also quite memorable.
Yaki Point History and Background
The modern history of Yaki Point is inseparable from the history of the South Kaibab Trail. In the wake of the creation (and commercial success) of the popular Bright Angel Trail, the National Park Service decided to construct another trail leading out from the Rim into the canyon. In 1925 they built just such a route near Yaki Point, initially calling it Yaki Trail, before eventually changing its name to the South Kaibab Trail. For years this trail was used by the members of the Civilian Conservation Corps that were housed at Yaki Point. When the East Rim Drive—known today as Desert View Drive—was built in 1931, it brought even more attention and accessibility to the area around Yaki Point. Today Yaki Point remains a notable attraction along the East Rim of the Grand Canyon.
What’s at Yaki Point
Compared to its neighboring viewing stations of Yavapai Point and Mather Point, Yaki Point offers visitors a unique vantage point. This is because Yaki Point occupies a different promontory than its surrounding stops along the East Rim. These special views include several striking landmarks. To the west, you can see portions of the Tonto Trail, as well as the final sections of the Bright Angel Trail. To the east, you can glimpse Cremation Creek, while across the canyon to the North Rim you will see a variety of stunning red mesas near Clear Creek.
Yaki Point is also part of the outstanding Desert View Drive. This scenic stretch of road begins at Grand Canyon Village and goes 25 miles east along the rim of the Canyon all the way to the Desert View Watchtower. This beautiful route through the Park goes by Yaki Point, and features a number of picnic areas, dedicated viewing stations, and assorted amenities.
Yaki Point is not accessible by private vehicle. However, visitors can still reach this site for free by utilizing the Kaibab Rim Route Shuttle Bus—also known as the “Orange Route.” There are public restrooms available at Yaki Point. For those visitors seeking additional amenities, the Grand Canyon Visitor Center is approximately 2.5 miles west from Yaki Point. There you will find all sorts of food and drink options, as well as multiple different picnic areas and souvenir shops.
Tips for Visiting Yaki Point
- Due to concerns about pollution and overcrowding, private vehicles are no longer allowed access to Yaki Point. However, the Park’s shuttle-bus system does service the spot. Between 6:00am and sunset, these shuttles run every fifteen minutes.
- If you are interested in a unique way of touring a small stretch of trail near Yaki Point, consider taking a guided bike tour. These tours are informative and scenic, offering visitors a pleasant and low-key way to enjoy this beautiful part of the park.
- There are dedicated picnic areas near where Yaki Point Road shoots off from Desert View Drive, so pack your lunch and enjoy it before or after making the one-mile journey to or from Yaki Point.