Just got my backcountry permit to the Deer Creek area of the Grand Canyon for June.
I've been hiking the Grand Canyon as part of my bike tours since 1995. I've hiked across the canyon 4 times and down and around a number of other times. The North Rim is soooo, soooo much nicer. There's a hiker/biker area near the campstore right on the edge of a side canyon and it's not far to the lodge with its magnificent vistas. If your tour takes you to the North Rim (Or South Rim for that matter), consider hiking down into the canyon. It really transforms the experience. On the North Rim, you can often find a spare backcountry permit for overnight hiking if you are flexible. Even a day hike is great - provided you start super early - spend the middle of the day splashing in the waters of Bright Angel Creek - and hike back up shaded by the canyon walls.
Some people wonder why I keep going back to the Grand Canyon. Whether I ever get bored. Could a person ever tire of the Grand Canyon? In a lifetime, could a person see it all? This year I will be in a remote section far from the North Rim lodge. Deer Creek and Thunder River are oases that have formed around waterfalls that that rush forth out of the canyon walls. There's a great paved road that leads southeast from Fredonia - then it turns to hardpack dirt at the national forest boundary. Then about 30 miles further you reach the trailhead on the rim. Then it's 9 miles straight down.
And a pic of Deer Creek - - http://www.kaibab.org/tr031/md_may_08_2003_161446.jpg
Water is a treasure in the inner canyon.
If you are heading to the Grand Canyon on your tour, I'll be glad to share what experience I have. Drop me an e-mail.
Best - J