This was our second visit to Bryce Canyon, but the first time that we had camped up by the park. We had made reservations at “Ruby’s”, a 250 site RV park just at the park boundary. It was a huge park and there was a lot of space and plenty of grass for Tali. She enjoyed long walks while we looked at the birds. Highlights were Lesser goldfinches, Western bluebirds, Gray-headed dark-eyed juncos and our new favourite bird: the pygmy nuthatch.
We started early for our big hike at Bryce Canyon and were walking with jackets, hats and gloves by 8:00. We started at Sunset Point, down to the shady and chilly Wall Street. Once we got into the sun, we warmed up enough to take our jackets off. This was one of the views looking up towards the rim.
We walked on the flats for a while, listening to the chickadees and Stellar’s jays, over to the Peek-a-boo loop.
We chose to do the Peek-a-boo loop counter-clockwise, because the people around us went the other way. Here is a view back to Sunset Point as we climbed up, with the trail all to ourselves for the moment.
Another view from the Peek-a-boo Loop.
And another, this time with Doug in it. This photo was taken at 10:30, while the sky was still clear, and the trail was relatively uncrowded.
We continued along the Peek-a-boo loop, back to the flats, then followed the trail to the Queen’s Garden. The clouds moved in, and the trail became busy, so the photos weren’t as nice. Here’s an view of an interesting landscape that is past Queen’s Garden and up the trail almost to Sunrise Point.
Once we were at Sunrise Point, we walked along the paved rim trail to our truck at Sunset Point. The “figure-eight” hike took us about five hours.
The next day’s event was mountain biking at Red Canyon, about a half-hour west of Bryce Canyon. Doug had fond memories of riding the Thunder Mountain trail, but Wendy wanted to save it for another day, so we parked at the Red Canyon trailhead, just beyond the tunnels. We were heading for the Cassidy trail, quoted in some mountain biker’s post as “the best trail you’ve never heard of.” We figure about three-quarters of it is fine; the rest is so rocky that it was “hike-a-bike” terrain for us. The trail is really a horse trail that mountain bikers now ride. We rode up Cassidy to Braxton Point, that had a great view.
We came down from the point and chose the Rich trail, then over to Ledge Point for lunch. The photo below on the left approaching Ledge Point and the right photo is one of the nicer sections of the Rich trail.
The next day, we made an early start for Durango, Colorado, a seven-hour drive. Stay tuned for our next post.