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Our last full day and night on our sister road trip began with catching the shuttle bus from Bryce Canyon City to Bryce Canyon National Park, approximately a 20 minute drive. Our driver chatted with passengers and shared with us that this is her summer job, she is actually the town’s P.E. teacher and school bus driver; her husband is the principal {adorable!}

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We decided to exit the shuttle at Bryce Point, which allowed us to hike part of the Rim Trail along some of the most breathtaking lookouts such as Sunset Point where you can see the chess-like formations in Queen’s City, and Inspiration Point, the perfect place to ponder the curious army of stone people in the Silent City.

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Bryce Canyon is actually multiple amphitheaters carved into the pink Claron limestone of the Paunsaugunt Plateau, and is the most “recent” addition to the geological staircase in this region. Ya know, just 525 million years of earth’s history under your feet, no big deal.

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The iconic castle-like rock formations that make up Bryce Canyon are actually called Hoodoos, and are eroded out of thin rock walls during weather cycles of rain and snow. The water dissolves and sculpts the limestone pillars and the never ending, always changing results are these dramatic life-like formations.

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We decided to part ways for a few hours, as I wanted to take the Navajo Loop Trail into the bottom of the canyon and Beth preferred to stay on the Rim Trail. I knew ascending the red, dusty switch backs in the blazing sun awaited me at the second half of the trail, but I couldn’t pass up the change of perspective from the bottom of the canyon, looking UP at the sun bleached pillars and spires.

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A section of the Navajo Loop: Wall Street

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Thriving Juniper in the canyon

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Delicate yet hardy canyon flora

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Dry river beds become raging water ways during rainy season

After loosing each other for three hours, and a false fire alarm which evacuated the entire lodge full of visitors, we decided we had been playing in the canyon’s vortex for long enough, and decided to call it a day, before any other mischievous events took place.

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Switch backs are the only way out of the canyon

That evening, we packed all of our things and went to bed early, eagerly awaiting our date with the sunrise in the canyon. The next morning we ended up having to leave before sunrise hit, but not before capturing the dreamy light at adeptly named Sunrise Point.

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Beautiful purple hues, just before sunrise

We said our silent farewell to the canyon lands, and raced back to Las Vegas in time to pick up my brother-in-law from the airport at 11am, and to begin 4 days of madness in Sin City…

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3 Responses

  1. Honoré

    Randomly came across your blog, never heard of Bryce Canyon before, but now I want to visit Bryce Canyon! This seems to be such a beautiful place.

    Do you know if it’s feasible to visit Antelope canyon from Bryce canyon in a reasonable amount of time? Looking at Google Maps it doesn’t seem that far apart but no idea how long it would actually take…
    Thanks

    Reply
    • olson.pdx@gmail.com

      Hi Honore! Bryce Canyon will make your eyeballs so happy, promise! The drive between the two is almost 3 hours, you definitely need a car and a week to explore. I want to go back and visit Antelope Canyon, Monument Valley and Arches National Park! All the places! Cheers,

      Reply

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