If you want to spot the Colorado river here are several options.
Check out some of the different views by taking the shuttle bus west to Hermits Rest. There are a variety of good points (Hopi, Pima, Mohave etc.) to see different angles of the Grand Canyon. The shuttle bus is free and runs on LP so it is much more free of pollutants.
You can also see the Colorado River and Phantom Ranch from the Yavapai point. An impressive view of the Canyon to say the least! My favorite!
It is a long hot journey to Plateau Point but you can see the river from there too. Your vantage point is excellent but the Bright Angel Trail is boxed in by the Canyon during the trip down vs. the next option.
I liked the view from the South Kaibab Trail. You will have to go down the trail around 4 or 5 miles to see the Colorado form that vantage point. I was surprised that I could hear the river roaring from that distance!
Take plenty of water if you choose to get a closer look at the Colorado River. There isn't any shade or water on this trail!
Favorite thing: I'd always wanted to see the powerful body of water that created the Canyon. During my first Grand Canyon trip, I didn't have enough time to hike down far enough to see it. Nearly two years later, I caught my first glimpse of this mighty river of creation. It is amazing how peaceful the river looks, almost as if its lazily winding its way through the Canyon instead of being the violent force which caused the upheaval we know as the Grand Canyon. The river's turquoise waters look pretty inviting too. Its easy to see how the mighty Colorado could lure unsuspecting would-be swimmers on a sweltering 100 plus degree day, unaware that its powerful currents are capable of carrying away the strongest swimmer or that the water's temperature is cold enough to induce hypothermia within minutes. Nature is the most powerful force, capable of unleashing wrath and destruction on those who fail to respect her power.
We don't really know how the Grand Canyon was formed. It antedates all of us living today. We suspect that it was primarily carved by erosion, from water (and ice) and the wind. The course of the Colorado River itself was probably a major part of it. Also vulcanism, continental drift and slight variations in the earths orbit which in turn causes variations in seasons and climate have been indicated as possiblilities.
Fondest memory: Most of my photos and notes on the Grand Canyon are under the National Park
The Colorado River seems peaceful from this vantage point a mile above the bottom of the canyon. However, the erosion caused by this rushing river has caused this mighty canyon.
John Wesley Powell, though physically impaired by the loss of one arm, led the first boat expeditions of the Grand Canyon in 1869 and 1871.
Favorite thing: see if you can spot the Colorado River at the bottom from the rim! If you look really closely, you can just see it in this picture. The Grand Canyon covers a really enormous area, and it's a long way down...