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Grand Canyon weather may not be exactly what you think it will be. Many people think because Arizona is a desert state, the Grand Canyon is a desert, too. Well, it is, but it's the "high" desert, and that makes all the difference.
The elevation of the South Rim is nearly 7,000 feet, and temperatures even in summer are usually not much higher than mid-80 degrees. Night cool down 30 to 40 degrees, so a sweater or jacket is a must even in summer. Wintertime is cool, and the canyon receives several inches of snow each year. Daytime highs may not reach above 30 to 40 degrees in many cases, and nights can drop below zero at times. Snowy and icy roads are common.
The inner canyon has its' own micro-climate that can be dangerous in winter or summer. Many people believe the temperature goes down as they descend into the canyon, but that's not true. The temperature rises, and an 80 degree day on the South Rim means 100 or more degrees in the inner gorge. Many hikers miscalculate about this, and don't take enough water or supplies with them on hikes into the canyon.
Grand Canyon weather can be deceiving. Summer afternoon thundershowers are common during July, August, and September. The canyon can fog in during the winter months, with a thick layer of clouds blanketing the inner gorge from rim to rim. Check the weather before you leave for your trip, as changing Grand Canyon weather can ground helicopter and plane flights over the canyon.