Bryce Canyon

Trip Start May 11, 2005
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of United States  , Utah
Thursday, May 4, 2006

Bryce Canyon was easily our favorite! This place was unbelievable. Our campsite was huge and flat and we didn't have to camp under trees that birds could fire at our tent from. There's a laundry and showers and boy did we need a shower... From first glance (from vistas on the road) the place does not look that impressive but once we got right down into the thick of all the hoodoos it was awesome! Hoodoos are the names given to the pretty rocks all over the park. They're very distinctive as they're narrow and stick straight up. They used to be fin formations that eroded. It was named Bryce in 1923 after a Mormon guy who moved there even though the Indians that lived there way before them had their own names for it.
Our first day there we just did the driving tour which really was not that exciting, but it's how so many tourists view the park (1.7 million per year), so we were thinking that this would be a quick visit. In the afternoon we hiked Navajo loop and Queen's Garden and got a taste of how awesome it was to be down amongst these hoodoos.
The next day we hiked along the Rim Trail from our campground (very handy) and joined the Fairyland loop. The landscape and the colors were like a fantasy world. The sandstone and the limestone blend together on strangely shaped rocks to make horizontal patterns of pinks, whites and oranges across miles of rock. Half-way through our hike Chelise thought that she could see a friend of ours that lives in Utah, up the trail a bit. I dismissed the idea because what would be the chance of randomly running into a friend on a random hike in a random park??? Well crazy enough: as we got closer, we realized it was him!! Chris Gentzkow, an old college friend turned out to being hiking the same trail on the same day I was!! He was there with his girlfriend Ann and 2 other friends - who crazy enough have property up in Big Sky where we had lived! Long story short we agreed to try and meet up the next day in Zion. We all had to dash as some ominously dark clouds were racing towards us. About 30 mins later it started to pour freezing cold rain on us that turned into snow. It snowed on us in Bryce and Chelise found out that her waterproof jacket was actually only water resistant. We had to get out of the rain so we drove out of the storm to Kodachrome State Park which was about 30 mins away. It was supposed to be great and colourful, but after Bryce there was no comparison.
That night we tried to find a bar in the local town, but this being Utah meant there was absolutely nothing!! So since it was so bloody cold we ended up having a couple of beers in the lobby of this massive hotel nearby and going back to make a fire. That night the temp dropped well below 32 and we froze our asses off! Bryce Canyon is at 8000 feet so needless to say we decided we would leave the next afternoon to get back to warmer temperatures.
Before we left though, we did one last 8 mile hike called the Peekaboo Loop. It was a perfect day for hiking with a crystal blue sky. The Hoodoos we saw this day blew us away and every view was better than the next. It's too hard to convey in words though. The trial kept winding up and down and through many hoodoos on a doneky trial.
Look at our pictures and go there. Bryce canyon is simply insane. It's a must dooo! Thanks Matt for the advice on the hikes to pick.
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