Papillon Grand Canyon Copter Rides To The South Rim

Papillon Choppers is renowned for it’s Grand Canyon South Rim trips. I had been responsible for the family’s canyon vacation this year. Naturally, I booked with Papillon. This is a quick report on my journey:

There had been six of us. We remained at El Tovar in Grand Canyon Village, which is situated in the boundaries of the National Park. I strongly recommend this particular hotel. It can be costly, however it is worth every penny because you are a few moments from the rim’s edge.

I believe you are able to make arrangements with Papillon to be picked up. Otherwise, you are able to arrange a pick up at the transportation desk within the Bright Angel Lodge. I hired a Toyota Landcruiser regarding our journey. I loaded the group inside and made the 10-minute drive to Grand Canyon National Airport.

The airport is located just outside Tusayan. You can’t overlook it. There’s lots of activity. Choppers as well as airplanes turn up and go away from it often. The Papillon terminal is the largest. I parked our vehicle and got us checked in (incidentally, the coffee there is delicious!).

The atmosphere is quite pleasant. I met a lot of fellow travellers from Germany, Canada, and also the United Kingdom. The reception is cozy. We had been up late yesterday so I slipped in a power nap. I awoke to my sister yanking on my jacket and telling me it was time to fly.

Choppers carry up to six folks (in the event you weigh more than 275 pounds you may be requested to purchase what they refer to as a “comfort seat.”). Since this was family, I upgraded each of us to the EcoStar 130, which features 25% more cabin room, theater-style seating, as well as a 180-degree wraparound windshield for far better views.

I additionally reserved us on the prolonged flight. Papillon’s typical South Rim heli journey is 30 minutes. That’s a lot for the majority of people. I estimate that what you can see in 30 minutes would need several days on the ground. Yet I needed more (it isn’t every day you fly the canyon), so I went with a trip that provided us between 45-50 minutes of time in the air.

Take off was amazing. Our chopper, nose forward, blasted from the tarmac as well as made a low-altitude flight over a forested wilderness, which hosts the biggest stand of Ponderosa Pine in the world. In ten minutes, we said good-bye to the edge and found ourselves front and center in the Dragoon Corridor, the broadest and deepest portion of the Grand Canyon.

It was a fantastic sight. The Colorado River was below us. So was the Temple of Ra. The spires and buttes were surreal. There wasn’t a cloud on the horizon. Our pilot explained that our visibility was about 140 miles in comparison to 30 for folks on the surface! The helicopter powered on to the stately North Rim. Here we turned back, taking in Hopi Point as well as Grand Canyon Village as we made our descent.

Papillon documents all flights using digital cameras on the exterior and inside of the heli. I recommend you purchase a copy of your journey on DVD. I did. The quality was great. I created duplicates for everybody. They cherished it. Undoubtedly an excellent souvenir of our heli trip.

Papillon Choppers Grand Canyon South Rim trip receives two thumbs up from us. This had been a trip of the South Rim. I’m pleased we did the prolonged flight. The extra airtime was worth the cost. Our guide was excellent and amused us with details and anecdotes of the region. He made the location come alive for us. This was definitely a trip highlight for my clan as well as me. We’ll undoubtedly be carrying out this air trip again.

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