More Western

After waking up from the alarm set way too early, we set out to see the sunrise at Bryce Canyon. Let me tell you: 04:45 is not ok.
Logically, we watched the sun rise above the horizon and the mountains at Sunrise Point, while last night we looked at the sun setting from Sunset Point. There is logic to that, don’t you think?

At the time, it was about 7 degrees outside, and while the sun was not shining yet, before sunrise remember?, it was quitting chilly. My hands were going all tingly and Kirsten was ready to go home. After all, the regular daytime temperate is about 32 degrees! It was the first sunrise together, and it was not at all that romantic as one would think. You’d be better of with a sunset, romantically speaking…

Bryce Canyon NP has a lot of wildlife. Among other animals, we’ve seen chipmunks, Utah Prairie Dogs, Pronghorn Deer and assorted birds. Especially the Prairie Dogs were fun to look at, back home they’re our favorites in Rotterdam Zoo.

Also, we hiked between Hoodoos at Bryce Canyon NP. This was a quite strenuous walk with really scenic views of the red cliffs and stone pillars found in the canyon. We made a ton of pictures there, and are sure there’s nothing like that walk anywhere!
After this, we quickly left the National Park and left for Zion NP.

As the road to Zion NP is temporarily closed on weekdays between 9 am and 4 pm due to construction work, we had to make a major 74 mile d-tour. This brought us ti Cedar Breaks NP. As it is situated a lot higher than most other places, it’s very much colder. At Bryce Canyon, the temperatures were up to 30 degrees celsius while Cedar Breaks was at about 18 degrees. Cold! It is a lovely National Park though, with similar views and scenic as Bryce Canyon, but with different types of stone.

After leaving Cedar Breaks, Zion NP was quickly reached. The hotel was quite a surprise though, when we found out the hotel quite easily lives up to it’s name Historic Pioneer Lodge. Yes, more Western style sleeping for us. Complete with a bed made out of logs and riding cowboys on the walls. Nice.

Springdale is quite fun, but tiny! Almost fully made up of hotels and restaurants, it’s hard to see the original stuff. Oh well, we’re here for Zion NP…


Diving into the Old West

Very early in the morning, we got up and got ready for an exciting day. First up: Antelope Canyon. Named after the African animals, the original settlers thought the cattle held by the native Indians were antelope but they were mistaken.
The trip was on a huge pickup truck with two rows of seats built in the trunk driven by this petite lady. She picked us up at the hotel and brought us after a stop at their HQ and a 20 minute trip over the freeway to the Indian park of Antelope Canyon.
I’m going ti be short on this one too: when in doubt, go there! It’s the best!

After checking out from our hotel, we met Mark & Christa who, due to the time difference between Arizona and Utah, were very close by. Seeing them was really weird, but a lovely interruption in our schedule. It’s been great fun guys!

The trip that day lead us to Bryce Canyon. Because of the fact that Bryce Canyon is smack in the middle of the Old Wild West, our hotel, Ruby’s Inn, was built to resemble this era in American history. Either you like it, or you totally dislike it: I found it to be amusing at best.We are there for the scenery, and not for the enjoying of our hotel. Besides: we were there only one night; and a very short one too.

Directly after arriving at the hotel, we took off to go see the sun setting over Bryce Canyon as we were told this was very spectacular. I can safely say that, compared to.the sunset at Grand Canyon this was not the case. Yes, we are spoiled!
Bryce Canyon is not so much a canyon but more of an eroding mountain where the most spectacular views are of an amphitheatre in the middle. It makes for some very scenic views and a great day out. We immediately drove all 17 miles to the far end of the park and got out at all designated areas. Great pictures were made! Below some I took with my phone. Tomorrow the rest and off to Zion NP!