Utah’s Bryce Canyon National Park, established on February 25, 1928, is famous for its oddly-shaped spires of rock called hoodoos.
These columns of multi-tinted rock can be as short as a human adult or as tall as a ten-story building. This variation of size and color creates a breathtaking view. The sporadic placement of hoodoos has fashioned natural mazes. Walk or hike them.
The park’s 35,835 acres contain horseshoe-shaped amphitheaters, slot canyons, and hoodoos. Fir-spruce forests and meadows border the rim, which varies from 8,000 – 9,000 feet.
Star-gazers will love the inky night sky at Bryce Canyon, where some 7,500 stars can be viewed without a telescope. Full moons during night hikes light up the hoodoos but you’ll also need headlamps. The park offers astronomy programs, though you must sign up early for them.
The best place to watch the sun rise is at Inspiration Point. The hoodoos turn red, pink, orange, and yellow in the rising sun. Another beautiful view can be found at Bryce Point. Rainbow Point is a nice picnic spot.
The Bryce Canyon Paintbrush is a beautiful, rare flower that only grows in southern Utah.
Fifty miles of hiking trails, ranger programs, horseback rides, and picnic areas offer plenty to do in the summer. Surprisingly, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are winter activities. There is a free shuttle between Ruby’s Inn and Bryce Point during summer months.
Park visitors may see the endangered Utah prairie dogs pop their heads out of an underground burrow. Other wildlife includes the pronghorn—the fastest land mammal in the United States. These fast runners can reach speeds of 60 mph.
I’m grateful to Photographer Keith Adams for sharing his beautiful photos of the park with us. Thanks, Keith!
-Sandra Merville Hart
“Bryce Canyon: National Park, Utah,” National Park Service, 2020/04/06 http://www.nps.gov/brca/index.htm.
“Bryce Canyon National Park,” Utah Office of Tourism, 2020/04/06, https://www.visitutah.com/places-to-go/parks-outdoors/bryce-canyon/.
Flynn, Sarah Wassner. National Geographic Kids: National Parks Guide U.S.A., National Geographic Society, 2012.
McHugh, Erin. National Parks: A Kid’s Guide to America’s Parks, Monuments, and Landmarks, Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, Inc., 2012.
Palmerlee, Danny; Bendure, Glenda; Friary, Ned; Karlin, Adam; Matchar, Emily; Sainsbury, Brendan. Discover USA’s Best National Parks, Lonely Planet Publications, 2012.