Submitted by bog
on Sat, 07/07/2012 - 14:01
The road ends in the Cape Royal parking lot. From here it is an easy, level 0.25-mile walk to Cape Royal. This viewpoint is located at the southern tip of the Walhalla Plateau and has a 270-degree view of the eastern Grand Canyon. It is arguably the best Grand Canyon viewpoint that is accessible by paved road. Wotans Throne and Vishnu Temple, two of the most impressive of the canyon's many buttes and temples, dominate the foreground. A side trail leads out to the Angels Window overlook, which offers a view to the east at the verge of a 1,000-foot drop. Angels Window itself is a natural arch in the fin under the viewpoint.
Summits in the Grand Canyon are mountains in their own right. If Vishnu Temple was sliced off at its base and placed on the plateau, it would rise 5,000 feet above its base. Because most Grand Canyon summits are difficult to reach, requiring hours or days of strenuous cross-country hiking, the last summits weren't climbed until the 1980's. Few rockclimbers are willing to carry heavy loads of climbing and camping gear over such rough terrain to reach climbs that are on soft, dangerous rock. Even Vishnu Temple, which was first climbed in 1933 by Merrel Clubb, had only 14 ascents by 1985. Although not difficult by rockclimbing standards, climbing Vishnu Temple from the North Rim is a difficult two-day hike and scramble and the ascent of the peak requires great care. Read more about 28.7 Cape Royal