Bryce Canyon National Park – the Visit

The Drive

Our visit to Bryce Canyon National Park began with a 18-mile drive lined with scenic view points.

At 9105 feet, Rainbow Point is the highest elevation of the park, offering a bird’s eye view of the “pink” canyon.

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Adjacent to Rainbow Point, Yovimpa Point is one of the few places where even a non-geologist can discern the sequence of rock layers forming the Grand Staircase.

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At Yovimpa view point, you are standing on the top step of the Grand Staircase known as the Pink Cliffs. Directly below you are the Grey Cliffs. As you look into the distance you can see Molly’s Nipple, which is part of the White Cliffs. Looking down into distant canyons near the horizon, you can just make out some red rock underneath the White Cliffs. This red rock makes up the Vermilion Cliffs. Hidden from view but directly under the towering Vermilion Cliffs are the comparatively diminutive Chocolate Cliffs. The tree-covered hills that meet the horizon belong to the Kaibab Plateau — the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. – US National Park Service

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Agua Canyon view point overlooks two distinctive hoodoos – “the Hunter (left) and the Rabbit (right)”

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Don’t think they look anything like their given names? This is because hoodoos don’t last very long and their shapes are constantly changing.

Natural Bridge is a natural arch sculpted by frost wedging. Its iron-oxide rich red color provides a sharp contrast to the dark green ponderosa pine forests below.

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Notice a small cluster of birch-like trees by the Natural Bridge parking lot?

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These are actually Quaking Aspens, used to be more common in the park.

The Hike

If there is one hike you must do in Bryce, it is the 3-mile Queen’s/Navajo combination loop. First take the shuttle bus to Sunset points, walk half a mile to the left along the canyon rim until you reach Sunrise Point. From there, follow the Queens Garden Trail to descend to the bottom of the canyon. And ascend back up to Sunset Point with the Navajo Loop trail.

We did not have enough time to do the whole loop. We just followed the rim walk from Sunset to Sunrise point, keeping our eyes fixed on the giant amphitheater below, calling out the towers, fortresses and cathedrals of the Silent City.

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The color changes from one vantage point to another.

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At last, we tucked away our cameras and silently panned the landscape with our eyes – taking it all in and pinning it to our minds. No photo could possibly do justice to this view.

Next destination -> Page, Arizona.

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26 thoughts on “Bryce Canyon National Park – the Visit

  1. This is just stunning scenery. thank you for these beautiful photos. And I am glad you took some moments to just sit and look , not through the camera lens. Sometimes the lens view lets us in on something we might not have seen but it can also concentrate our vision of the larger and in this case grand view. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Excellent point Anne! I remembered a long time ago, I went on a whale-watching trip, I got so engrossed in taking that perfect shot, that I don’t even remember what the whale actually did. I mean, I have captured on the memory card, but it was blank in my own memory. What is the use! From them on, I always make sure I put the camera away and spend time to see the sights through my own eyes and have it engraved in my mind.

      Liked by 1 person

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