Bryce Canyon National Park Off The Beaten Path

  • Kodachrome Basin State Park
    Kodachrome Basin State Park
    by goodfish
  • Map of the park boundaries
    Map of the park boundaries
    by BruceDunning
  • Trees grow in the rock
    Trees grow in the rock
    by BruceDunning

Best Rated Off The Beaten Path in Bryce Canyon National Park

  • richiecdisc's Profile Photo

    Douglas Fir

    by richiecdisc Written Jun 24, 2009

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    plenty of sun makes for a fuller tree
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    Most people know them simply as Christmas Trees but the Douglas Fir does exist outside the world of such customs. I must admit I never thought of such trees in what otherwise seems like a desert but at this high elevation it appears they grow quite well. They adapt well by self-pruning the lower part of the trunk if there is not enough sunlight. You will see some in Bryce where only the top looks like a the tree you know and another two thirds of the trunk look like a telephone pole! This one is obviously getting plenty of sun and looks more typical.

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    Zion National Park

    by windsorgirl Written Dec 7, 2004

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    waterfalls at Zion NP

    Many people combine a trip to Bryce Canyon with a visit to Zion National Park. Zion Canyon is located only 78 miles southwest of Bryce Canyon on hwy 9.

    Here, you will find a completely different environment from Bryce Canyon. Zion is lush and green and there is not a hoodoo in sight! Instead you will find soaring sandstone cliffs and 1000 foot waterfalls.

    See my Zion NP pages for more photos and info. You can use your National Parks Pass at both Bryce and Zion.

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  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo

    Red Canyon-Hike to Arches

    by BruceDunning Updated Oct 28, 2009

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    Series of arches in the rock formation
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    This park is nearly as impressive as Bryce; well getting close in some regards. I hiked on the trails here, and some were moderate, to getting a bit difficult. The park is located on Hwy 12, and 9 miles west of the turnoff to Bryce at Hwy 63. It has red rock, hoodoo's, arches and quite solitude in the woods. They have 14 trails to hike, and 7 of those also can be used for ATV's and horses. I liked the park atmosphere and the fact that less people come here to enjoy it.

    This first hike is 3/4 miles and up 300 feet ascent. The hike is a loop back to the parking area, and you walk through one large arch to go behind the ones you just saw in front. There are 15 arches in the area along the hike. Location is about one mile west of the visitor center, and turn right going west unto Casto Canyon Rd. Park and hike in where shown.

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    Red Canyon-Hike the Golden Wall

    by BruceDunning Updated Oct 27, 2009

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    Path over ridge to the top
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    This is called the Golden Wall because you literally climb a narrow stretch; like as in a wall to get to the top of the rock walls. The hike is rated moderate to strenuous, and it is 3 miles in length. It was around 400 feet ascent, and the trail had loose gravel/stones to watch you footing. You start up the trail behind CAmpground #23 on the south side of Hwy 12. Climb up the hill, and take about 10 switchbacks to get to the plateau. Then go on toward the narrow path heading to the end. Return the same way you went up. The vertigo got to me a bit going over the path on the ridge

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  • Dutchnatasja's Profile Photo

    Enjoy a rodeo in the evening.

    by Dutchnatasja Written Nov 23, 2004

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    Watch the bronco busters and cowboys display their skills in this western competition. You’ll see them bull riding, calf roping, and do all sorts of rodeo things. It’s fun to watch. It may not be the biggest or the best rodeo you ever saw but the broncos and the tough cowboys and clowns put on a fun and exciting show. Hey how many of you have even seen a real rodeo? So grab your hat and put on your boots and go to the rodeo!

    Bryce Canyon Country Rodeo

    * From Memorial Day weekend to mid-September, Monday through Saturday evenings at 7pm.

    * Admission is $7 for adults and $4 for children under 12. Tickets may be purchased in Ruby's Lobby.

    * Location: Across from Ruby's Inn.

    * For Country Rodeo tickets call:
    Toll Free - (866) 782-0002 or (435) 834-5341

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    • Horse Riding
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    Dixie National Forest

    by BruceDunning Written Oct 27, 2009

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    Trees grow in the rock
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    The Bryce and Red Canyon parks are surrounded by the National Forest Service Park territory. The forest areas actually cover many different sections in Utah from the west edge to the east. It has 2 million acre area and stretches 170 miles. Elevation range is 3,000 to 13,000 feet. A large number of people come here to camp in the woods. At REd Canyon, there is a campground that would hold about 150 campers in two sections.

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  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Stolen Moment in the winter

    by goingsolo Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Bryce Canyon National Park

    The temperature is 12 degrees and that's without factoring in the wind that rips across the canyon, stinging my eyes and cheeks as I struggle for a few feet along the Rim. All thoughts of hiking the Fairyland Trail are gone as it is buried in the white powder that covers the bench, walkways and nearly all of Bryce Canyon. When the wind dies down, silence envelops the scene and its a moment of peaceful reflection.

    Who am I kidding? Its 12 degrees out and I'm not about to sit on a block of ice and reflect. That's an activity reserved for the summertime. But its nice to know my spot is still there.

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    Red Canyon-Hike BirdseyeTrail

    by BruceDunning Written Oct 27, 2009

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    Balancing rock on the hoodoo ledge
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    There are 3 combined trails that connect behind the visitor center. Overall the hike is 2 1/2 miles round trip. The hike is worth it in that it takes you right up close to the red hoodoo's and through some even. The hike is designated moderate, and elevation change may be200-300 feet at one point, and some rock climbing. That is the fun part.

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  • mikelisaanna's Profile Photo

    Tropic Reservoir in the Dixie National Forest

    by mikelisaanna Written Dec 3, 2005

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    A view with the Tropic Resrvoir in the distance

    Tropic Reservoir is a manmade lake in the Dixie National Forest, which is adjacent to Bryce Canyon National Park. It is a good place to go fishing, as is the stream in the valley south of the reservoir. It is reachable via an unpaved road that heads south off of Route 12 a few miles west of the Bryce Canyon National Park entrance.

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    Seeing a pronghorn (American...

    by worldtrekker Written Sep 15, 2002

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    Seeing a pronghorn (American antelope) is not necessarily off the beaten path but just luck. They are occasionally seen in the National Park as they have recently been reintroduced in the area. Photo: We caught sight of 2 proghorn at the intersection of Hwy 12 and Hwy 89, just 7 miles south of Panguitch in Sept. '96. This is one of the only times that I got close enough to one of these animals to get a decent photo. The pronghorn is the fastest animal in the Western Hemisphere, and among the fastest in the world. They often make 20 foot (6m) bounds and have been clocked at 70mph (100 km/hr) for 3 to 4 minutes at a time. Speeds of 45 mph (70 km/hr) are not unusual, and the animal can maintain an easy cruising speed of 30 mph (50 km/hr) for about 15 miles (25 km). Because it inhabits open terrain, it relies on spotting predators at a distance and on its ability to flee speedily. The animal's large protruding eyes have a wide arc of vision and can detect movement 4 miles (6.5 km) away!

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    Willis Creek and others

    by WinInZion Updated Apr 2, 2006

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    Looking into Willis Creek, a neat little hike.
    1 more image

    We spend a good amount of time exploring Utah and love the area outside of Bryce. If you want to take a ride out HWY 12 from Bryce I can't say enough good things about the area around Cannonville. If you exit at Cannonville and follow the signs for Kodachrome State Pk you're on the right track. Here's what I would recommend:

    Take the first dirt road you come to marked by a sign that points to Kanab. This is Skutempah Rd and you need to only go in about 6 miles to reach Willis Creek.. This is a really nice slot canyon and very easy hiking. Wear shoes that you don't mind getting wet. I mostly wear sandals for this hike.

    Note: Check with the BLM office in Cannonville to make sure the road is open! Thiss can get snow and may not be open Nov-May.

    Either going or coming you can stop at Kodachrome. The day I was there it was pouring rain and we didn't get a good chance to explore. Cottonwood Rd exits at Kodachrome and this is a good choice if you're heading to Rt 89. Grosvenors Arch is is not far down and is beautiful. Again, check to make sure the road is open.

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  • mikelisaanna's Profile Photo

    Go Four-Wheeling in the Dixie National Forest

    by mikelisaanna Written Dec 3, 2005

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    A pretty valley in the Dixie National Forest

    The Dixie National Forest is adjacent to Bryce Canyon National Park and is criss-crossed by dirt and gravel roads that can be easily traveled with a four-wheel drive vehicle. The scenery is great and it is a great way to get away from the crowds. There are a number of campgrounds in the Dixie National Forest if you are unable to get one in Bryce. Admission to the Dixie National Forest is free.

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  • mikelisaanna's Profile Photo

    Go Four-Wheeling in the Dixie National Forest

    by mikelisaanna Written Dec 3, 2005

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    A pretty valley in the Dixie National Forest

    The Dixie National Forest is adjacent to Bryce Canyon National Park and is criss-crossed by dirt and gravel roads that can be easily traveled with a four-wheel drive vehicle. The scenery is great and it is a great way to get away from the crowds. There are a number of campgrounds in the Dixie National Forest if you are unable to get one in Bryce. Admission to the Dixie National Forest is free.

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  • goingsolo's Profile Photo

    Farview Point in the winter

    by goingsolo Written Dec 19, 2004

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    Bryce Canyon National Park

    Nothing brings out the beauty of Bryce like wintertime. Seeing the colorful red and orange spires adorned with snow is the way they were meant to be seen. Bryce is striking in the summer, but becomes a winter paradise in its paradoxically off season.

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  • Jerelis's Profile Photo

    Kanab - A nice western style town

    by Jerelis Written Jun 30, 2006

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    Jeroen playing poker at a bar in Kanab.

    A nice western style town situated between Glen Canyon N.R.A. and Bryce Canyon. Famous of all the movies and tv-series shot in this area like "The Lone Ranger", "Lassie" and "Maverick".

    We made a short stop for some refreshments and had a quick look around.

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