So with the Western stop of Highway 12 behind us, we continued on down highway 12 for more adventures and nature.
Our first stop on the road East was Red Rocks. It’s right there off the road, provides a nice stop, and marks the first spot where the surrounding geology truly becomes otherworldly. The hike around the rocks is relatively short, but it allows you to walk around hoodoos while the interpretive trail provides an excellent primer on the history of the area and local fauna and flora.
I’d say it’s worth the stop, but from here on out everywhere is, so let’s take that as a given from here on.
When discussing the famous parks of Utah, I’ve heard many people say that they like Bryce better than Zion, as it feels more personal. I certainly agree that it is a more personal experience, but they differ so much in size and experience that I think it’s unfair to compare the two.
The approach to Bryce feels very much like the Grand canyon in that you’re walking through some trees and then suddenly a canyon gapes in front of you. The rim walk here also gives you a good view of the canyon from several angles, allowing you to stop and gawk at the hoodoos and the sheer distance of the place.
The Queen’s Trail
But if you’re at Bryce, you simply must walk down into the canyon. The sweeping vista is lovely, but that intimacy that everyone talks about is all due to being able to walk among the hoodoos. We took the easy loop trail from Sunset Point to Sunrise Point via the Queen’s Trail, descending a set of switchbacks down the to floor, traversing the hoodoo maze, then ascending a decent hike back up.
There’s a lot more trail for those who want more intense hikes or are not trying to do it with a 2-year-old, but even just this is so very well worth it.