Bryce Canyon Itinerary
Day One: At Bryce Canyon National Park
At the gate you will be given a map of the park. Just past the main gate you can stop at the visitor center and view the various displays on the geology and other information about the park. Drive to some of the overlooks. The main road in Bryce Canyon goes from the Gate on the North for 18 miles to the South end of the park.
There are many places to stop and take photos. If you enjoy walking then there are many trails that lead from the top of the park down in and among the formations. As you stop at the overlooks you will be looking to the East into the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument and across the Bryce Valley toward Powell Point which rises to over 10,000 feet. Depending on the season you can enjoy many activities in the park – such as rodeos, chuck wagon rides and entertainment, horseback riding, helicopter rides, etc.
Day Two: Markagaunt Plateau Loop
Circle West to the quaint town of Panguitch (just 20 minutes away) and spend some time shopping or catching a meal. From there go south and climb the mountain on a beautifully paved road to Panguitch Lake (the word Panguitch means – "Big Fish"). Here you can rent boats and gear for fishing or bring your own. There are stores and restaurants for lunch or dinner and supplies. When you're finished viewing this sparkling large lake in the mountains, continue south and West to Cedar Breaks National Monument. You'll be close to Brian Head Resort if you want to drop down into the town. Here you can rent Mountain Bikes and ride a large network of trails. In summer you can even put your bike on a ski lift to the top of a mountain and ride downhill through the forest. At Cedar Breaks you can view the formations of the Markagaunt Plateau. It is much like Bryce Canyon. From here you can circle south and then East on highway 14 to see overlooks toward Zion National Park. You’ll pass Navajo Lake, which sits like a jewel in a mountain valley. You can take an easy walk to Cascade Falls and see where water seeps from the side of the mountain and literally cascades into the upper Virgin River. The Virgin is the river that has carved Zion National Park. Venture further East on highway 14 and stop at Duck Creek Village.
From here you have options of following Mammoth Creek Road through the forest back to Panguitch, or traveling East to highway 89 and back to highway 12 and to your room at Bryce Canyon.
Day Three: Zion National Park
Go south for 1.5 hours and step into the deep red sandstone canyons of Zion National Park. There are many places to pull your car to the roadside and take short walks to incredible overlooks. You may like the blind arch overlook at the top of the park.
Travel through the mile long tunnel that goes through the side of cliff and then zigzag down into the Zion Canyon valley. Park your car in the quaint town Springdale and ride the tram into the main canyon where you can view Emerald Pools, Weeping Rock, The Great White Throne, Temple of Sinewava, the Narrows and much more. This is a great day of fun.
Day Four: Kodachrome Basin State Park / Grosvenor Arch
Travel East down highway 12 to Kodachrome Basin State Park -just 17 miles. Positioned at 5,800 feet in elevation, Kodachrome Basin State Park is perhaps Utah’s finest state park and is just a few minutes from Bryce Canyon National Park and the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument. Kodachrome Basin State Park covers over 4,000 acres of ground and is a magical place with unique geologic formations, caves, arches, walking paths, horseback and wagon riding, and much more.
Many of the formations within the park were formed in a very unique way. Anciently there were many geysers in this area that, over time ceased to spew water from their natural rock pipes within the ground. Over subsequent eons of time these pipes were filled with sediment which then became harder rock than the surrounding sediment. Over more time, the surrounding sediment was eroded away leaving the standing rock towers that had filled the pipes of the geysers. These towers are visible throughout the park today where they stand as tall monuments to the geyser activity that once occurred in Kodachrome Basin State Park.
Kodachrome is nine miles south of Cannonville. Drinking water and modern rest rooms, picnic tables, fire pit, barbecue grills and electricity is great for outings. A concessionaire provides horse rentals and supplies. The park has a resident ranger. Also close to Kodachrome Basin State Park is Grosvenor Arch a unique multiple arch formation right off the Cottonwood Canyon road.
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