A Fairyland in Utah
Bryce Canyon National Park is a true marvel hidden in the mountains of Utah, with a landscape like nothing we had seen before! While this park isn’t as large as some of its neighbors, it definitely enchanted us with its fairytale landscape of glowing "hoodoos".
Because these hoodoo rock spires and towers are formed over many years and are constantly changing, the entire landscape is changes as well. So each time you visit Bryce, you are visiting a different looking park! So it's a once in a lifetime experience!
Here are some things we loved about Bryce:
The best time to see these beautiful formations is first thing in the morning. The light filters through the arches and spaces in between the hoodoos as if invoking awake the fairy spirits that live there.
The best way to view this amazing sight is to get to Sunrise Point before dawn. We arrived 30 minutes before sunrise to avoid the crowds, but we soon realized how popular this experience truly is, even in the offseason and in 19 degree weather! So even though you are sharing the experience with a ton of other people in freezing weather, it was so worth it!
When the first rays of the sun peeked over the horizon, they started to gently light up different features at different times. It was like God's light show for us in the valley! At no other time of day did these formations look so amazing and so delicate.
We love to sleep in, but we were very happy to have the privilege to witness this incredible sight! This is a must do for any visit to Bryce Canyon!
Get Down In The Canyon!
Bryce is beautiful from above on the rim, but the real adventure begins through the twisting turns around the hoodoos as you descend into the canyon and walk along the valley floor.
The hoodoos took on a different personality from below and became towering statues protecting the canyon and its inhabitants. This viewpoint gave us the privilege to see different facets and shapes in the same hoodoos we saw above, and the massiveness of each hoodoo really hit home when you are standing at the base of one!
Just be aware that there is a lot of elevation gain on the way back up the canyon! So be prepared to work a little to get back home and bring enough food and water to sustain the entire trip!
Explore By Horseback
An awesome way to explore the park is via horseback! We didn't get a chance to do this, but we passed several tours on our hikes. For the descent into the valley and subsequent ascent back up, we would have really loved to be on horseback! But we got a good workout nonetheless and earned extra s'mores that night!
Check out the natural arches throughout the park!
Hoodoos are actually the remnants of broken arches of sandstone, worn away by extreme temperatures of freezing cold and sizzling heat over many years. So there are a ton of arches to be seen on all the trails. We had a lot of fun being silly and taking photos in the arches!
Taking Rim Shots
We were obsessed with taking shots sitting over the cliffs and rims with the beautiful valley below. There are so many great photo locations we just couldn't resist ourselves! We had a ton of fun getting these beautiful photos!
Check Out the Same Spots at Different Times
This was a valuable piece of advice we received before arriving at the park. Lighting changes the landscape dramatically at Bryce Canyon. Formations that seemed flat, dull and colorless at one time of day revealed rich, beautiful colors at a different time of day as the sun danced around the valley. It was definitely a treat to see a constantly changing environment throughout the day!
Be Prepared for Crowds
We arrived in the beginning of Bryce Canyon’s off-season and were quite surprised how populated the park and camping options were. We saw a lot of people on the trails, so I can't imagine what it must be like during the high season! Try to time your trip in the off-season so you can have a more intimate experience, but just know this magical place is super popular!
We hope these help you have your own amazing experience at this park!