First Snowy Hike

You never know what will happen when you venture out with Deb and Steve, but we have learned from past experience to be prepared for anything!  We started out the day with an idea of taking a 1.7 mile hike along the rim trail.  A portion of it was closed, so we thought we would do what we could.  Before we got started though Lee wanted a cup of coffee, and we went into the General Store near Sunrise Point.  Steve and Lee got into a conversation with the employee there who told them that one of the trails to the bottom of the canyon was passable.  Since Steve really wanted to go to the bottom, Lee was willing to give it a try.

I was pretty nervous because although the hike was only 1.5 miles it had an elevation change of 850 feet.  Not only had we never done a hike with that much elevation change, Lee hadn’t hiked that far since the heart attack.  He was adamant he wanted to go though, and since we had packed lots of water and food, I said I was willing to give it a try.  If nothing else I thought we could always turn back, and I would like to see more of the canyon.

We had to hike through the snow to get to the trail head.

 

Here’s Lee with his cup of coffee!

 

The fairyland trail was an additional 4.4 miles but was closed.

 

The path was part mud and part snow, but didn’t look that bad in the beginning.

 

And the views right around the corner were outstanding.

 

 

Closeup with the long lens.

 

The path soon became more snow than mud though and we needed to pay close attention. This tree was the only obstacle in the path.

 

But we didn’t let that stop us

 

The path kept changing and we really had to watch our feet. Small steps were definitely called for and I really wished I would have brought my poles!

 

There were places to stop for rock hugs though

 

And some beautiful trees.

 

Lee’s pic…looks like a painting.

 

Eventually we turned a corner and saw the wall!

 

It was huge and really amazing and stayed in view for a large section of the hike.

 

I loved this section that looked like a mask.

Our favorite section of the hike was when we got really close to a section of wall. It was so tall and majestic it was hard to know where to look.

 

The path was totally dry on this side. See that tiny hole up in the middle left of the wall?

 

You could walk up to it on the path before coming down

 

This “little” section of wall was directly across from the large section.

 

Steve and Deb.

 

We all had a great time taking turns getting our picture taken.  So much to look at.

 

Gives you some perspective.

 

Someone is happy 🙂

 

Directly across was this rock formation that I thought looked like a huge poodle.

 

And I loved this tree

 

After that section the path was in much better shape, but it started to get really hot.  We had to start shedding layers as we walked and by the time we got down to the river, it was definitely warm.

The river

 

Deb heard water flowing and walked off the path to find this charming little waterfall. I have never seen a pink waterfall before.

Lee felt the waterfall deserved it’s own short video…..

 

Finally we made it to the Tower Bridge sign which was the end of the trail.

 

Steve and Deb were glad to see this. Three of these and you are considered a Hoodoo hiker.

 

The tower bridge itself was a bit anti-climatic, but did provide a shaded area to eat lunch

 

Here’s a short video Lee made of the hike….

Now it was time to hike back up and I was really dreading it.  It wasn’t great, but not nearly as bad as I thought it would be, mainly because we took multiple breaks along the way.  Plus it was much warmer going up and we stayed in our T shirts all the way.  I am really happy that we hiked all the way to the bottom and felt a sense of accomplishment from doing it.  It definitely wasn’t easy, but we saw people older than us doing it, and even one family carrying babies on their backs.  That will make you feel like a sissy pretty quickly!  I am especially glad that Lee had no trouble whatsoever, despite the cardio workout on the way back up.  That was wonderful, and I conquered my fears about doing a hike with significant elevation change, which was nice to do.  All in all really glad we got to experience it and especially with Steve and Deb.  We frequently stretch ourselves when we are with them and I am always grateful for it.

(Here’s a bonus video of some of the vistas from Bryce! Always best in fullscreen, at 1080 resolution. – Lee)


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First Time Seeing Bryce Canyon

When we first visit a new national park we generally start with the visitors center and then take the scenic drive.  The drive helps orient us in the park and also gives us a feel for which trail heads are the busiest.  These scenic drives can take hours, and often turn into short walks which can lead to a mini hike.  Even though we knew the Bryce scenic road was open 11 miles we wanted to take advantage of the beautiful day.

Let me just say the views were absolutely stunning.  Everyone should visit this park at least once, but don’t take my word for it check out the pictures.  And yes the sky was really that blue.

Yes just wow.  Aptly named Inspiration Point.

 

From Left: Lee, me, Deb, and Steve

 

Some of the trails/viewpoints were closed, but we saw what we could.

 

You can see how high the snow was in some spots.

 

I loved the snow with the green and the red rocks.

 

 

Bryce Point was really cool, we walked all the way out to the end.

 

The rule in the national parks is “paws on pavement” but we left them in the car because of the snow.

 

 

The hoodoos eventually collapse under their weight and look like this picture. In 3 million years scientists estimate Bryce Canyon will be totally flat.

 

The shades from the sun and the clouds were really pretty.

 

Here’s one without us kissing 🙂

 

 

You seriously cannot take a bad picture here.

 

The guys doing a little posing.

 

 

One of the coolest spots is the Natural Bridge where we let the dogs out a bit.

 

Deb taught us how to do this cool panoramic affect. Basically I started the picture then I run behind the person taking it when they move the camera past me, then switch my position and their I am at the end. Very fun.

It was a really cool day and we decided that we would definitely try and do a hike next.  The warm weather encouraged us all that it might be possible and we had other parts of the park we wanted to explore.


Supporting our Blog

We very much appreciate your support of our blog. You can help by doing any or all the following:

  • Make purchases via our Amazon website links.  There is no additional cost to you, and a portion of the proceeds help support our blog.  Search Amazon.com here.
  • Purchase the ebook telling the story of how we became full-time RVers.
  • Purchase our recipe book filled with 80 recipes we have cooked in our RV and taste tested by Lee himself. You can purchase the kindle or paperback version on Amazon or buy the Apple version on Itunes.