Monday, November 2, 2015

Day 3 (Part 2): Paging Dr. Canyon

Happy November! It's not really my favorite month, but least I get some days off in the end. :)

Last I posted, I had talked about the first part of my day in Bryce Canyon (BC). You can go see the other posts for this trip here:

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3 (Part 1)

 [View from the top before hiking down into that lovely darkness.]

After our driving tour of BC viewpoints, we did the hike from Sunset Point to Sunrise Point, which goes down Wall Street, and is apparently part of the Navajo Trail. (The reviews on this site give lots of impressions of this hike.) Basically you get to go down into the the small crevices between the spires and be surrounded by tall rock walls. It's so awesome!

 [It's kind of hard to tell, but this is a section of switchbacks where the path descends pretty steeply. It's okay going down, but the people coming up were obviously very tired and would have to break after even one switch. I'm so glad we were going the other direction!]
[That woman is probably wishing for a helicopter right about now.]

As you walk, it goes deeper and deeper. Just when you think you've reached the bottom of the canyon, there's a path that goes even lower. It's such a unique experience like nothing I've ever seen. Thinking about it right now makes me want to go back!

[That little spire/hoodoo on the right there is called Thor's Hammer, if I remember correctly. I don't feel like looking it up. Several of them have names but I haven't really researched it to learn them.]

Once you get to the bottom, the scenery changes and it's more open. The trail meanders through desert forests with shallow inclines at first. Then the last section back up to the top (Sunrise Point) gets steeper and it's pretty challenging by that point. The whole hike took about 1.5 to 2 hours. (I'm checking my Fitbit for reference, but it's hard to know since we had to walk from our car and then walked after the hike, too.) I felt pretty good, considering it's about 26ish flights of stairs from the bottom to the top. And high elevation! I was thankful for all the hills I had walked over the summer.

After I reached the top, I rushed to the lodge gift shop to use the bathroom. When I approached the clerk to ask about where it was, he gave me a free caramel! I love caramel. Then Dania and I looked around the gift shop briefly and then went back to our hotel.

There aren't many restaurant options in BC, especially not then, since the summer options were closed. The only one with decent reviews was a western theater place, and we were so not in the mood to sit and watch that. We just wanted food, so we ended up shopping at the little grocery store and picking up some items to heat in our room. It was the most expensive grocery shopping (per item) of my life, but I tried not to give it much thought since it was vacation. We ended up having pot pies and ice cream while we watched TV.

There was a beautiful sunset outside our room, over the small lake. Then when it got completely dark, we headed out again for some night photography. I wasn't sure I'd be able to do this since there were clouds earlier, plus I was just tired. But Dania was very encouraging and a great sport about going. It was kind of spooky driving out to the main gates in such darkness. They had no one manning the gates, which was good since we had forgotten our pass at the hotel.

We found an empty parking lot and took a few pictures. I remembered why I don't practice this more--it's spooky! It's kind of unnerving being in such darkness. Who knows what animals could be around? We had flashlights, but it was still kind of cumbersome setting things up. Those people who do lots of awesome night photography deserve many props for spending hours in such dark locations. It's definitely harder than it looks to get a decent sky photo. Mine were somewhat successful, and you could see the Milky Way at least. It was a great view of the stars, but I didn't really have the right equipment. It was a learning experience, and a reminder that I have much more to learn! Then I was anxious to get back to the safety and warmth of the hotel. :)

Thanks for continuing to follow my trip journal! See more photos in the gallery. Stay tuned for Day 4!


  1. I love that photo with the chain linked fence for some reason! I want to walk down Wall Street and then take the magic invisible elevator back to the top.

    1. Thanks! I know, it would be nice if they had an easier way up!



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