Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah, USA

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah, USA (5/X/2015)

Bryce Canyon National Park Utah USA
Bryce Canyon National Park - Utah, USA
Bryce Canyon is one of the most spectacular views in the world – absolutely awe-inspiring!

Set in the breathtaking amphitheaters of Bryce Canyon National Park, thousands of intricately carved spires called hoodoos with green forests makes up one of the greatest miracles in the world (see photos). 

Bryce Canyon National Park Utah
Bryce Canyon National Park - Utah
Bryce Canyon is not a canyon but actually the eastern slope of the Paunsaguant Plateau. The rock on top of the plateau varies in hardness. Over millions of years of wind, water, and geological events, softer areas have eroded away. The harder rock remained in interesting shapes.
Bryce Canyon from Sunset Point utah
Bryce Canyon from Sunset Point

The Bryce Amphitheater is the most visited area of Bryce Canyon National Park. It has many of the most famous sites in the park. It is easily accessed being located just southwest of the park visitor center. Bryce Lodge and General Store and the Sunset Campground are also located here.

Beautiful Drive Hwy 12 Utah usa
Beautiful Drive on Hwy 12 - Utah
Getting to and around Bryce Canyon National Park is fairly easy. Hwy 12 just west of the Bryce Canyon National Park is one of America’s most scenic drives (see photo). Red Canyon, located along Hwy 12, has astonishing views of red-rock scenery. Bryce Canyon main park road, Hwy 63, has access to popular viewpoints. The park shuttle is convenient stopping at the viewpoints.

Map of Bryce Canyon
Map of Bryce Canyon
Hwy 63 runs parallel to the cliffs on top of the plateau. The major viewpoints offering incredible view in the Bryce Amphitheater are Sunrise Point, Sunset Point, Inspiration Point, and Bryce Point. Photo opportunities are best at sunrise and sunset when the colors are the most vivid.

Some nice hiking trails exist in Bryce Canyon National Park. Above the Bryce Amphitheater, the Rim Trail goes for about 5.5 miles following along the rim of the cliff (see map). The Bryce shuttle stops at all but Fairyland Point making shorter one-way hikes available between stops. 

Pat Dunlap Bryce Canyon National Park
Pat at Bryce Canyon National Park
For an easy half-mile hike on the Rim Trail that is mostly flat, walk between Sunset and Sunrise Points. Other sections have elevation changes making them moderately difficult hiking.

The easiest trail that descends below is the Queens Garden Trail. Accessed from Sunrise Point, you can hike as far as you want and return the same way. This is a great way to get close to these amazing rock formations.

Horseback Rides Bryce Canyon National Park Utah
Horseback Rides in Bryce Canyon National Park
Starting and ending at Sunset Point, the Navajo Loop Trail also drops down into Bryce Amphitheater. It extends for about 1.3 miles. Combining the Navajo Loop with the Queens Garden Trail, you can hike for 2.9 miles between Sunrise and Sunset Points. You should plan to take 2-3 hours for these hikes and bring plenty of water.

By planning ahead, Bryce Canyon National Park can also be enjoyed by horseback or guided tour (see photo).

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4 comments:

  1. I was in Bryce Canyon a very long time ago and remember being impressed by it. Time to return to Utah and continue the journey!

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  2. Those hoodoos in Bryce Canyon are spectacular. When I visited, I didn't have enough time to do the Queens Garden Trail justice, but just going down into the canyon a short ways was spectacular. But I did enjoy a wonderful meal at The Lodge at Bryce Canyon restaurant. So good. Hope you get to try it next time you visit. http://travelswithcarole.blogspot.com/2012/08/where-to-stay-eat-things-to-do-bryce.html

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  3. I agree 100 percent! Bryce Canyon has some of the most beautiful natural scenery in the world! Simply spectacular. Your post brought back my own memories of visiting the National Parks.

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  4. I visited Bryce Canyon about 25 years ago and am certainly due for a return visit. Thank you for the reminder, Wayne!

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