Home Button Places Button Theme Park Button Other Stuff Button Video Button Wallpaper Button
Introduction & Places by Name Places by State  Places by Type  Road Trips!

Bryce Canyon National Park

Quick Index:

Entry sign
There is a Bryce Canyon, but Bryce Canyon National Park isn't a canyon, but a series of amphitheaters at the Eastern edge of the Paunsaugunt Plateau covering 56 square miles. A Mormon named Ebenezer Bryce and his wife Mary first settled here in 1874, who once remarked that "it was a hell of a place to lose a cow". Who am I to disagree?

The area became an attraction of sorts, and people referred to the place as Bryce's Canyon. Eb eventually left in 1880, due to a prolonged drought that affected the area. I do have to point out that a drought in this area of Utah is like having the sun rise in the East every morning.

However, that didn't stop people like Ruby Syrett from establishing a hotel and guide services in the late 1910's before the place as even a park. It paid off for the Syrett's, who owns all those properties right outside the park. Now known as just "Bryce Canyon", it became a National Monument in 1923, and congress authorized the National Park in 1928. Back to Top

Bryce Canyon National Park Map
Cropped map of Bryce Canyon National Park. Click on the map for a larger view.
This area of Utah holds a soft and colorful sandstone, which under the right conditions is easily molded by the erosion of the elements.

Bryce Canyon is probably the premier showcase of this erosion, forming vertical columns that often looked carved rather than eroded, locally known as Hoodoos. (Cedar Breaks National Monument, just down the road to the West, shows this same type of erosion.)

Bryce is one of my favorite parks, with its intricate sandstone formations, easy access via the park road, seemingly poseable wildlife, and it hasn't become overwhelmed with crowds like Zion and Grand Canyon. One still has to keep in mind that that most of the park is over 7,000 feet, so if you're not used to the altitude, plan on some extra time getting around...

I had visited the park in September 1997 and September 2008. Back to Top


Even in 1997, I commented that putting a garbage can in front of the entrance sign was a really thoughtless. There are probably 1000's of photo albums with a picture of the entrance sign... and a garbage can. By 2008, not only did they build a small plaza in front of the sign so stupid tourists could pose (gosh, like me), but put in a small parking area.

It's also interesting to note the only tree still recognizable in the background is the one behind the sign.

Entrance Sign
200809SW_1236P19103 199709Wst_603F1415
Back to Top

Fairyland Point is actually inside the park boundaries, but outside the fee area. I'll add that I just love wildlife that's so unconcerned that you're there that they turn their back on you...

Fairyland Point
200809SW_1325P19120 199709Wst_665F1601 199709Wst_666J0704 199709Wst_667F1602 199709Wst_668F1603 199709Wst_668J0705 200809SW_13261332P19120 200809SW_1333P19120 200809SW_1334P19120 200809SW_1335P19120 200809SW_1336P19120 200809SW_13381343P19120 200809SW_1344P19121 200809SW_1347P19121 200809SW_1348P19121
Back to Top

Sunrise Point
200809SW_1279P19112 199709Wst_604F1416 199709Wst_605F1417 199709Wst_606F1418 199709Wst_607F1419 199709Wst_608F1420 199709Wst_609F1421 199709Wst_610P0315 199709Wst_611J0620 199709Wst_612F1422 199709Wst_613F1423 199709Wst_614J0621 200809SW_1280P19112 200809SW_1281P19113 200809SW_12911307P19113 200809SW_1308P19113 200809SW_1310P19113 200809SW_13111313P19114 200809SW_13141316P19114 200809SW_1319P19114 200809SW_1320P19114 200809SW_1321P19114 200809SW_1322P19114
Back to Top

Sunset Point
200809SW_1256P19110 199709Wst_664J0703 200809SW_1274P19110 200809SW_1275P19111 200809SW_12571273P19110
Back to Top

Inspiration Point
200809SW_1237P19104 200809SW_12381243P19104 200809SW_1244P19105 200809SW_1245P19105 200809SW_1246P19105 200809SW_12471252P19105 200809SW_1253P19105 200809SW_1255P19105
Back to Top

Bryce Point
200809SW_1155P18165 199709Wst_659J0702 199709Wst_660F1523 199709Wst_661F1524 199709Wst_662F1525 199709Wst_663P0405 200809SW_11561159P18165 200809SW_11601174P18165 200809SW_1175P18170 200809SW_11761182P18170 200809SW_1183P18171 200809SW_1184P18171
Back to Top

Paria View
200809SW_1126P18163 200809SW_1128P18163 200809SW_1130P18163 200809SW_11311149P18163 200809SW_1150P18164 200809SW_1151P18164 200809SW_1152P18164 200809SW_1154P18164
Back to Top

Swamp Canyon
199709Wst_650J0636 199709Wst_651J0701 199709Wst_652F1517 199709Wst_653F1518 199709Wst_654F1519 199709Wst_655P0404 199709Wst_656F1520 199709Wst_657F1521 199709Wst_658F1522 200809SW_11161121P18161 200809SW_1122P18162 200809SW_1123P18162 200809SW_1124P18162
Back to Top

Unnamed Pullout (MM9)
200809SW_1109P18160 200809SW_1110P18160 200809SW_1111P18161 200809SW_1112P18161 200809SW_1114P18161
Back to Top

Farview Point
200809SW_1101P18160 199709Wst_647F1515 199709Wst_648F1516 199709Wst_649J0635 200809SW_1108P18160 200809SW_11021107P18160 200809SW_1036P18144
Back to Top

Natural Bridge
200809SW_1093P18155 199709Wst_643J0633 199709Wst_646P0403 200809SW_10941100P18155
Back to Top

Aqua Canyon
200809SW_1038P18145 199709Wst_638J0632 199709Wst_639P0402 199709Wst_640F1512 199709Wst_641J0631 199709Wst_642F1513 200809SW_1039P18145 200809SW_10401046P18145 200809SW_1047P18145
Back to Top

Unnamed Pullout (MM14)
Back to Top

Ponderosa Point
199709Wst_634F1509 199709Wst_635F1510 199709Wst_636J0630 199709Wst_637F1511 200809SW_1080P18154 200809SW_1082P18154 200809SW_10831088P18154
Back to Top

Black Birch Canyon
199709Wst_628F1506 199709Wst_629J0627 199709Wst_630J0628 199709Wst_631F1507 199709Wst_632F1508 199709Wst_633J0629 200809SW_1067P18153 200809SW_10681076P18153 200809SW_1078P18153
Back to Top

Rainbow Point
200809SW_1056P18151 199709Wst_618F1425 199709Wst_619J0624 199709Wst_620F1501 199709Wst_621J0625 199709Wst_622F1502 199709Wst_623F1503 199709Wst_624F1504 199709Wst_625J0626 199709Wst_626F1505 199709Wst_627P0401 200809SW_10501055P18150 200809SW_1057P18151 200809SW_1058P18151 200809SW_10591063P18151 200809SW_1064P18152 200809SW_1065P18152 200809SW_1066P18152 199709Wst_615F1424 199709Wst_617J0623
Back to Top

The Mossy Cave unit is off of Utah-12, four or five miles from the turn off to the main part of the park. Jo was going to go horseback riding, so we didn't hike all the way to the cave. Of course, being 7,000 feet above sea level could have had something to do with it...

Mossy Cave Trail
200809SW_1003P18115 200809SW_10041009P18120 200809SW_1010P18120 200809SW_1011P18120 200809SW_1012P18120 200809SW_1013P18120 200809SW_1014P18120 200809SW_10171020P18120
Back to Top

Related Links

Rubys Inn
Rubys Inn Link Ruby's Inn is named after Ruby Syrett, who promoted the area in 1910, years before Bryce Canyon became a park. As a matter of fact, the Syrett family still owns the land right outside the park, as well as the two hotels, both gas stations, the restaurants, all the gift shops and grocery store.

Only the original Best Western existed when I was there, and I stayed in a brand new room with a whirlpool tub right next to the pool atrium. It was rough, but someone had to do it...
Near Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah / 25 Images. Visited Sep 2008.

Utah State Route 12
Utah-12 Link Utah State Route 12 (also named as the "Journey Through Time Byway") is my favorite road in America.

The 124 mile road starts at a unnamed junction with US-89 and ends in Torrey, Utah, pretty much connecting Bryce Canyon to Capitol Reef National Park. In-between are a couple of those spectacular Utah State Parks, a National Monument and some jaw-dropping landscapes just off the side of the road.
Utah / 67 Images. Visited Sep 1997, Sep 2008.

US-89 Link US-89 is a remarkable road that follows some of the most scenic areas of the West from Canada to Arizona, and along the way passes through (or comes within a few miles of) over a half dozen major Western Parks. Glacier to Yellowstone to Grand Teton, Bryce, Zion, Glen Canyon and Grand Canyon.

I've actually frequented this road quite a bit, but in a disjointed, non-continuous fashion.

Visited Various

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante NM Link Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument is actually larger than the state of Delaware, but has a population close to the number of visitors in the park.

The GSENM page starts with an overview of what the Grand Staircase actually is, a geologic wonderland stretching from the Aquaritus Plateau at Bryce Canyon to the bottom of the Grand Canyon. This 8,000 foot drop in elevation in almost discreet steps holds some of the most breathtaking scenery in America.
Near Escalante, Utah / 33 Images Visited Sept 1997, Sep 2008.
Back to Top

Trip Report: Sep 1997, Sep 2008.

Return to: State Index Utah State Page National Parks

  • 04/30/2016 - Initial deployment
  • April 2017 - Upgrade to v3.4.
Help! About This Site Friend me on Facebook for updates on this site Contact Me