Bryce Canyon: The Natural Wonder of the Hoodoos

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Hoodoos, it sounds like some sort of voodoo spell cast on you by a strange woman you might find in a mysterious swamp somewhere. Fortunately for all of us, hoodoos are actually beautiful natural pillars that were formed through millions of years of erosion. They can be found all over the world, although they are often referred to as pillars, peaks, spires, etc. Only in Bryce Canyon can you see the largest collection of hoodoos anywhere in the world- hundreds of thousands of pillars reaching up to the sky with their naturally striped bodies.

Bryce Canyon is geared towards those of outdoorsy inclinations, with many different hiking trails available for any physical ability. If you are looking for an easy trail, you can walk along the rim all day long and see all the viewpoints without the crowds or the traffic. There are also other easy trails that are all less than 2 miles for short hikes just to take in a little bit of the scenery.

If you prefer a more moderate hike, you can take one of the several 4-mile hikes down into the Bryce Amphitheater or see one of the lesser-known areas of the canyon with the Tower Bridge or the Swamp Canyon. If you are looking for a more strenuous day hike for a good bit of exercise on your trip, check out the 5+ mile loops through Rainbow Point or the Fairyland Loop.

For the serious adventurer, Bryce Canyon also offers backpacking campsites. You can hike the Under-the-Rim trail which goes for 23 miles with eight different campsites. The Riggs trail comes in at only 9 miles with four campsites if you aren’t looking to walk your feet all the way off. The views no matter what will be absolutely spectacular, and the backpacking trails will be significantly less busy than the easy hiking paths.

If you aren’t looking to hike, you can jump on the Bryce Canyon Shuttle almost every day from 8 AM to 6 PM and get a convenient ride through the park to stop at all of the viewing points. These shuttle services also help to limit the amount of tourist traffic that goes through the park, clogging the narrow roadways.

To make a full trip out of your time in Bryce Canyon, so you can hike multiple trails or take a ranger guided tour, you can stay at one of the two campgrounds located within the park. A quick walk to the Bryce Amphitheater, you can’t get a spot with a better view. However, if camping isn’t your style you can always stay at the Bryce Canyon Lodge, which also offers a full service restaurant and a gift shop for cute souvenirs.

If you are interested in visiting Bryce Canyon, visit the National Park Service website to plan your trip.

From Flickr user PiConsti

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