Welcome to the audio described version of Bryce Canyon National Parks official print brochure. Through text and audio descriptions of photos, illustrations and maps, this version interprets the two-sided color brochure that Bryce Canyon National Park visitors receive.
The brochure explores the natural history of the park, some of its highlights, and information for planning your visit. This audio version lasts about 65 minutes and 6 seconds which we have divided into 22 sections as a way to improve the listening experience.
Sections 1 through 7 cover the front of the brochure and include information regarding the landscapes, geology and wildlife of Bryce Canyon.
Sections 8 through 22 cover the back of the brochure which consists of two park maps, information about the visitor center, camping, hiking, astronomy and plant life.
Bryce Canyon National Park, located in Utah, is part of the National Park Service, within the Department of the Interior. The thirty three thousand acre park is located about 270 miles south of Salt Lake City Utah and 260 miles Northeast of Las Vegas Nevada, on the Western edge of the Colorado Plateau, in the High Plateaus region. This park, established in 1928, is the highest elevation of the national parks in Utah. Each year, millions of visitors come to enjoy the unique experiences that only can be had at Bryce Canyon. We invite you to explore the park's natural beauty and majestic views. Smell the sweet scent of the Ponderosa pines. Take a hike and hear the crunch of gravel underfoot. Listen to the wind whistling through the canyons. For those seeking to learn more about the park during their visit, an audio described video and relief maps of the park and Grand Staircase region can be found at the visitor center. To find out more about what resources might be available or to contact the park directly, visit the "Accessibility" and "More Information" sections at the end of this audio-described brochure.
OVERVIEW: Front side of brochure
The top half of the brochure features a scenic photo looking into Bryce Canyon's amphitheater from the rim. The bottom left side of the photo fades into text describing the park through different senses. Below this description, is text describing the geology of Bryce Canyon accompanied by two small maps. One of ancient lakes and another of the Colorado Plateau. To their right is a collage of photos of Bryce's wildlife with accompanying text. Below the wildlife collage and geology, is an large illustration of the Grand Staircase. There is accompanying text on the bottom right. At the bottom left of the page are three photos depicting the formation of hoodoos with accompanying text.
A large color photograph with text overlain
A large panoramic landscape photo shows the vertical red rock formations called Hoodoos emerging upwards from a layer of white snow in a bowl shaped landscape. The hoodoos originate at the top of the plateau in the upper left corner and descend down towards the foreground on the lower right. Scattered amongst the hoodoos are snow covered trees. In the background more snow covered red rock formations can be seen as well as snow covered pine trees in the left foreground.
CAPTION: Bryce Amphitheater
CREDIT: KEVIN DOXSTATER
Bryce Canyon’s serene vistas are deceptive; the landscape is never static. Stand at the rim in early morning and experience the chilly dawn, crystalline blue sky, and rocks ablaze with the ruddy light of sunrise. After breakfast, walk the rim and your shifting perspective dramatically recomposes the scene below. The sun arcing across the sky casts a kaleidoscope of slowly altered hues and shifting shadows over the land. You peel off layers of clothing as the air rapidly warms—as much as 40°F from dawn to late afternoon. Thin air can leave you short of breath. The high elevation that causes these effects also creates the climate that weathers the cliffs and bulbous columns called hoodoos. After sunset, as the chill returns, listen through the advancing twilight for the faint clatter or murmur of the stones tumbling in the distance. At Bryce Canyon the forces of weathering and erosion never rest, not even for a day. This dynamic, mesmerizing place is like no other.
Photographic collage of 9 animals on a blank background with a thin gold frame. The title is, Wildlife at Bryce. The animals are described in the following text.
IMAGE 1 of 9: Steller’s jay
A small color image of a crested bird, in slightly less than profile, clinging to the edge of the image as if to a tree trunk.
The Steller's Jay is a crested bird mainly blue and black in color with some white markings on its face above the eye. In this collage it is located in the upper left along the left edge of the frame. It is native to the Bryce Canyon region and is common in the park. It is larger than a robin, but smaller than a crow. It is a member of the corvid family of birds.
The head of a Steller's Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri) is black or dark brown. This forms a sort of "hood" on the bird which fades into blue at the shoulder. On top of the head is a crest. This crest is the same brownish black color and forms a triangle of feathers standing in an upright fashion with one point continuing the slope of the head from the beak, another poking straight into the air at about a 45 degree angle, and the third meeting the neck at the back of the head. This crest can often be seen raised in this fashion or lowered into a pointed line off the back of the head - which is the case for this image. The bird's beak is fairly long and straight, tapered to a point for eating plant matter as well as insects. These omnivorous habits make Steller's Jays especially common in picnic areas. There are often small white dashes above the Steller's Jays eyes, and sometimes a white or blue marking on the face between the eyes and into the crest. Their blue plumage generally begins near the shoulders and covers the rest of the body in hues of azure to cobalt blue. The primary wing feathers and tail are barred with black.
CAPTION: Steller’s jay
CREDIT: KEVIN DOXSTATER
IMAGE 2 of 9: Great Basin rattlesnake
A small color image of a tan snake with darker tan markings. This photo is located in the lower left corner of the collage.
The Great Basin Rattlesnake is a venomous reptile native to the Bryce Canyon area. It is light brown to gray with a thick body and a tapering line of darker blotches down the middle back to a series of small rattles on the tail. In this image it is slightly curved back on itself and the dark, forked, tongue is fully extended from its triangular head.
This member of the pit viper family, latin name Crotalus viridis lutosus, is covered in keeled scales - meaning each scale has a ridge line rather than being smooth. This keeling creates a duller, non-shiny, appearance which allows the snake to better blend with its surroundings. The body of these snakes are generally tan to gray in color with a line of blotches down the midline of the dorsal side. These blotches are generally lighter in the center with a ring of darker scales. These blotches are generally wider than they are long. Nearer the tail and rattles these blotches become bands of black. Great Basin Rattlesnakes have a characteristic white stripe that stretches from eye to the corner of their mouths.
These snakes tend to live in areas of rocky outcroppings, slopes, and streambeds. They are encountered often by hikers along trails, especially in areas where careless hikers have fed the favored prey of this snake - chipmunks and ground squirrels. These rattlesnakes are very important in for healthy populations of these rodents as well as others. Bites from rattlesnakes are uncommon and most often occur when someone is harassing or attempting to catch the snake. Remember to give these snakes a wide berth if encountered for the safety of the snake and yourself.
CAPTION: Great Basin rattlesnake
CREDIT: KEVIN DOXSTATER
IMAGE 3 of 9: Golden mantled ground squirrel
DESCRIBING: A small, color image of a rodent.
The Golden mantled ground squirrel is immediately to the right of the Rattlesnake. It is standing on its hind legs, in near profile, facing left. Its coloring is a mixture of buff brown to golden yellow with a darker, near-black, back with two white stripes running the length of its back. It has small, rounded ears and a long tail held up and out from the body. It is one of the most commonly seen wildlife at Bryce Canyon National Park.
Latin name - Callospermophilus lateralis - is often mistaken for a chipmunk, but is larger than its cousin and lacks the characteristic facial stripes of the chipmunk. In addition, the rust to golden "mantle" across the shoulders of the aptly named squirrel is a prominent contrast to the rest of its coloring. It weighs less than a pound, often closer to half a pound, and stands at nine to fourteen inches in length. The tail makes up one third to half the length of the rodent. The tail is brown to black on top and fades to tan or reddish underneath. The underside of the animal is cream to light brown. It has a white ring around dark eyes and its forelimbs are extended and clasped in front of its chest. Found in every life zone at Bryce Canyon, the main diet of the Golden-mantled Ground Squirrel is varied and includes pine nuts - which may be cached for early spring feeding after hibernation.
CAPTION: Golden mantled ground squirrel
CREDIT: KEVIN DOXSTATER
IMAGE 4 of 9: Pronghorn
DESCRIBING: A medium sized color image of a male pronghorn directly to the right of the Golden-mantled Ground Squirrel
The deer-like Pronghorn faces forward. Its chest, underside, sides, and inner legs are white. It is tan otherwise except for the white chin, cheeks, and two slashes on the front of the neck. It has two horns with forward faces prongs growing from the top of its head. The ears are hardly visible, but are large and erect just behind the horns. This male has a black mask that covers both eyes and down its snout, and a black patch at the back of its jaw.
The Pronghorn, Antilocapra americana, is the fastest animal in the western hemisphere. They can run up to sixty miles per hour. They are faily compact mammals, standing at about three feet tall and about four feet long. They weigh anywhere between ninety and one hundred twenty pounds. The rump of Pronghorn is also white, the hairs on which are raised to signal danger. The eyes of the Pronghorn are large, wide-set, high on the skull, and face more forward than most caprinids giving them more than three hundred degrees of view. Their delicate legs end in a two toed hoof with plenty of cushioning for high speed running. Pronghorn live in mainly open shrublands and eat grass, forbs, and sagebrush - especially in winter. The horns of the Pronghorn are unique in that they are true horns with a bony core. However, they have a keratinous sheath which is shed and regrown annually like an antler. Both male and female pronghorn have horns, but the males are significantly larger. A males' horns will be from five to seventeen inches in length and pronged. A female's will be smaller, only one to six inches and rarely pronged. They have large nostrils at the ends of their snout which allow them to take in plenty of air to supply their large hearts and lungs while running.
Pronghorn have no natural predators as they can outrun any other extant species which suggests their speed developed as a defense mechanism to a predator which no longer exists, such as the American Cheetah. Any current predators, such as a bobcat or coyote, must rely on luck and surprise.
CREDIT: DAN NG
IMAGE 5 of 9: Uinta chipmunk
A small, color, image of a rodent perched on a rock.
Immediately to the right of the Pronghorn is the Uinta Chipmunk. It is a small striped rodent with a long fluffy tail. Reddish brown in color with distinct white and black stripes on its back and face. It is facing right and somewhat away from us, but the face is turned in profile.
The Uinta chipmunk - Neotamias umbrinus - is small at anywhere from eight to ten inches in length, including the tail, which can be anywhere from a third to half the length. It weighs, on average, two and a half ounces. They have small rounded black ears, dark eyes, and sharp claws. It is the most common chipmunk species at Bryce Canyon. This image shows the chipmunk in summer colors - reddish brown with three wide, distinct, dark blackish-brown stripes running down its back, separated and surrounded by four paler stripes of whitish fur. Three dark and pale stripes are on either side of its face as well running horizontally from nose to ears. In winter, these colors become much paler and stripes become less distinct. The underside of the rodent remains a paler gray white despite the season. The relatively long tail has matching reddish brown and black fur, with a paler underside.
Uinta Chipmunks are mainly arboreal, so while they spend a lot of time foraging for seeds and small fruits on the ground, they nest in the trees. In winter they do not truly hibernate, though they are significantly less active. They build a cache of food all summer, stuffing many seeds into their cheek pouches to supply it and spend their winters snug in their nests making short trips to their food cache to eat.
CAPTION: Uinta chipmunk
CREDIT: KEVIN DOXSTATER
IMAGE 6 of 9: Clark’s nutcracker
A small color image of a black, gray, and white bird in flight
The Clark's Nutcracker in flight is facing the left side of the collage at just right of center. It is angled slightly downward giving us a display of the extended right wing. Its body is gray, roughly the same size as the Steller's Jay, and the wings are mainly black with white patches near the body on the trailing edge. The feet are visible and dangling below the body.
The Clark's Nutcracker (Nucifraga columbiana) is another member of the corvid family native to the Bryce Canyon area. Their main source of food is pine nuts, which they bury and retrieve later in the season. Their beak is fairly long, pointed, and conical with a slight downward curve to achieve peak efficiency in this regard. Aside from a small blaze of white around the eyes, the head and body are downy gray in color in stark contrast to the body, the wings and tail are black and white. The wings tend to be all black except for a small white patch on the trailing edge stretching from very near the body to about midway along the length of the wing. The outer tail feathers are white and the central tail feathers are black. The feet and beak are also black on the Clark's Nutcracker.
CAPTION: Clark’s nutcracker
CREDIT: CHARLES G. SUMMERS, JR.
IMAGE 7 of 9: Utah prairie dog
DESCRIBING: A small color image of a large rodent sitting on a rock.
The Utah Prairie Dog is resting on its haunches, but otherwise erect in a three quarters pose exposing its very round belly to the viewer. Its forelimbs are extended and bent upwards with paws clasped below the chin. It is tawny in color with dark eyes, a dark patch over the eye, and hardly visible ears.
Latin name Cynomys parvidens, the Utah Prairie Dog is the smallest of prairie dog species - weighing on average one and a half to three pounds. They are eleven to fourteen inches long, including the white tipped tail, which is about one to three inches long. Males are slightly larger than females. Utah Prairie Dogs have the most restricted of range of all prairie dog species. They are located only in southwest Utah.
These animals are very social and live in large burrowing colonies. These colonies have many entrances and exits allowing for a quick escape if necessary. Underground retreats are safe havens from many predators like hawks, but are not safe from burrowing predators, like badgers. Lookouts posted throughout the colony warn of danger by barking. They make many varied sounds and have complex communications. Their diet consists mainly of grasses and forbs. Over the course of the summer, these prairie dogs pack on extra weight to survive hibernation all winter long. They are prone to flea infestations and bubonic plague is not uncommon among colonies.
CAPTION: Utah prairie dog
CREDIT: KEVIN DOXSTATER
IMAGE 8 of 9: Violet-green swallow
DESCRIBING: A small color image of a soaring bird.
The Violet-green Swallow is in flight located in the upper right corner of the collage, and soaring toward the upper edge of the frame. Viewed from below the body is white and the wings and tail are darker. The wings are two tone with the shoulder area being darker than the trailing edge. The tail is made up of two darker triangles on either side of a white center.
This small bird is an insectivore and catches its meals in flight. As such, its beak is short and broad. They are very aerodynamic for acrobatic flight with pointed wings that are longer than the tail feathers - especially noticeable when perched. Their coloration is spectacular. The stark white of the underbelly wraps around near the rump to form white splotches or "saddle bags" just above the tail feathers. The upper portions are an incredible display of emerald to forest green on the head, neck, and back, while the wings and tail are a grayish bronze. There are hints of iridescent royal purple at the nape and on the rump.
CAPTION: Violet-green swallow
CREDIT: KEVIN DOXSTATER
IMAGE 9 of 9: Mountain lion
A medium sized, color image of a large cat walking on rocks.
The Mountain Lion is located directly under the Violet-green Swallow in the lower right corner of the frame. It is a large tawny cat with a lighter underside. It is facing forward, but looking slightly to the left. It is walking on a solid gray rock substrate with the front left paw slightly raised as if to take a step. The tail is not visible. The ears are erect and pointed and the eyes are golden and ringed in black.
Puma concolor, the Mountain Lion, is the largest member of the cat family in North America. Lions usually weigh about 75 to 175, roughly 30 inches at the shoulder for a large cat, and up to 8 feet long including the tail. The cylindrical, furry, black tipped tail is usually about one third the length of the Mountain Lion. Their fur is short, coarse, and very dense. Their coat is darker on top and lighter on their underside, however colors can vary. They are generally a light brown to tawny, but can be rust, more lemony, smoky grey, dark brown, or even black in rare cases. Their facial markings can also vary but tend to be darker around the eyes with white patches on the front of the snout and darker patches beside, but light cheeks. Their pointy ears are the same coat color on the back, but lighter inside with longer hairs poking out of the interior of the ear. They have large paws on stout legs. They are ambush predators and stalk their prey which is most often deer, but can include rabbits and larger prey like elk. Though large and capable, they are not apex predators and will yield kills to larger predators like bears and packs of wolves.
CAPTION: Mountain lion
CREDIT: ANN MARIE KALUS
Watchful eyes and good luck may reward you with wildlife sightings. Mountain lions and Great Basin rattlesnakes are secretive and not often seen. White throated swift nests blend with the red rocks—but look up on Wall Street and you may spot them. Violet green swallows wait out spring cold snaps by slowing their fast metabolism. Utah prairie dogs were listed as an endangered species in 1973, but protecting both them and their habitat improved their situation; in 1994 they were listed as a threatened species.
IMAGE 1 of 2: Ancient Lakes
DESCRIBING: An illustrated map of the single point intersection where the borders of Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico meet.
The illustrated map titled Ancient Lakes shows a body of water that overlaps the borders of Utah, Colorado and extends into Wyoming. From the point where the corner of each state meets, Utah is to the upper left, Colorado is to the upper right, Arizona is to the lower left and New Mexico is to the lower right. The major section of the lake is in Utah and appears to boarder a region of elevated land to the west. The water reaches into the upper left corner of Colorado and toward the bottom left corner of Utah.
An inland sea that divided the continent east to west 90 mya deposited sediments that formed the oldest rocks in the park. They lie unseen now below the Claron Formation that formed from 55 to 35 mya by sedimentation in large lakes, above, that waxed and waned in the region.
CREDIT: NPS / HOWARD FRIEDMAN
IMAGE 2 of 2: Colorado Plateau
A second illustrated map of the single point intersection where the borders of Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico meet.
This illustration, titled Colorado Plateau, highlights Bryce Canyon in the lower portion of Utah, centered, slightly above the north border of Arizona. Bryce Canyon has a second label titled Paunsaugunt Plateau. To the south west of Bryce, closer to the border with Arizona, is Zion. A circled portion of north western Arizona, slightly below Zion is labeled as the Grand Canyon.
Massive tectonic-plate activity from 20 to 15 mya began to push up a tremendous swath of Earth’s crust. This eventually raised the region nearly two miles, to form the 130,000 square mile Colorado Plateau.
CREDIT: NPS / HOWARD FRIEDMAN
Lives of the Hoodoos
Weathering and erosion shape these statuesque rock features, but unlike many places, flowing water only plays a minor role in this story. As snow and ice melt, water seeps into fractures. As it refreezes, it expands and cracks the rock around it. This common process of frost-wedging happens with uncommon frequency at Bryce Canyon.
About 180 days a year temperatures swing widely between freezing nights and warm afternoons. The combination of gravity and meltwater causes soil creep, moving the stone fragments downhill. Rain from summer thunderstorms further dissolves the limestone into a clay ooze and generates just enough flowing water to help remove the debris.
Before this area was full of hoodoos it was full of water. Between 55 and 40 million years ago, today’s Utah was a mountain encircled basin. For millions of years, rivers deposited sediments, mostly dissolved limestone, into a system of large lakes. Twenty million years ago, as the Colorado Plateau began to rise, the lakes dried up and their mixtures of sediments became the muddy limestone called the Claron Formation.
A large, colorful, two dimensional illustration of a three dimensional relief map
The overall image covers a large area from Bryce Canyon in Utah to the Grand Canyon in Arizona. A series of cliffs steps down from the right toward the center of the image. The color of each step represents the natural color of the rock in that step. The steps right to left descend from the top to bottom of the staircase. The steps, starting at the top are the Pink Cliffs, Gray Cliffs, White Cliffs, Vermillion Cliffs and Chocolate Cliffs. The front of the image appears smooth and flat with colored lines representing the rock layers. On the right front, the layers are tilted downward toward the right and thickest part of the staircase. The left side of the image covers the Kaibab plateau and the Grand Canyon. The topography is umbrella shaped with a high center and lower margins. A snaking Grand Canyon intersects the flat front and apparently cutting into the underlying layers, then bends and creates a wide horseshoe shaped canyon around the high center. The front painted layers follow the hill shape on this side.
This image represents a little more than 9300 square miles of Southern Utah and Northern Arizona, an area slightly larger than the state of Vermont. A physical relief map similar to this image is available in the visitor center, however the vertical scale in this image is exaggerated compared to the true to scale relief map. The focus of the image is a series of cliffs from the right like a staircase. The colors of the cliffs correspond to the natural colors of the rock in the Grand Staircase. Each cliff set is shaded to give the illusion of the natural drainages
The top step only covers the front half of the map, is white and flat on top, labeled Paunsaugunt Plateau, and pink on the sides of the cliffs, labeled Pink Cliffs. A box of text labels the rough location of Bryce Canyon in the closest area of the pink cliffs. On the front of the image the topmost pink layer is labeled Claron Formation, this is the only rock layer on the front that is labeled. The area labeled Gray Cliffs gently grades from pink to grey and appears more as a slope than a cliff. The gray cliffs area sits only under this top step. In nature the gray cliffs are made up of weak rock which decays into gentle slopes in most places more than solid cliffs.
Directly under this slope is the large tan-yellow flat tops of the section labeled White Cliffs. This layer is the thickest of all the layers in the Grand Staircase with towering 2000 foot cliffsides in some areas and this is the first section that spans the entire map. Zion Canyon is labeled near the back of the map. Small sections of the these white cliffs are separated from the main cliff sit, like islands standing alone, atop the red orange flats of the area labeled Vermillion Cliffs. The Vermillion cliffs span the map front to back. Under the back half of the Vermillion cliffs sit light brown Chocolate cliffs.
The center of the image there is a shaded area where the land bends upward toward the Kaibab plateau. The entire left side of the map is mottled green and brown to represent the vegetation. The front painted layers bend upward and follow the terrain. The topography around the Kaibab plateau is umbrella shaped with a high center and lower margins. The high center is labeled Kaibab Plateau. The area near the front center is labeled Paria Plateau. Next to the Paria Plateau the front painted layers are intersected and cut by the Grand Canyon. A snaking Grand Canyon intersects the flat front and apparently cutting into the underlying layers, then bends and creates a wide horseshoe shaped canyon around the high center and is largely hidden in the back by the Kaibab Plateau.
CREDIT: NPS / KEVIN DOXSTATER
Layers in rock are like the chapters in a huge history book that describe how Earth developed. Where can you read the only unabridged edition of the planet’s history? Right here.
The Grand Staircase, illustration above, is the world’s most complete sequence of sedimentary rocks, rocks formed over vast timespans from sediments built up in lakes, inland seas, swamps, deserts, and forests.
From Grand Canyon at the bottom of the staircase, through Zion Canyon in the middle, to Bryce Canyon near the top, this rock record recounts a history of 525 million years.
Elsewhere on Earth the geological sequences have been interrupted by uplift of mountain ranges or carving and scouring action by glaciers. In the Grand Staircase, however, very few gaps mar the sequence. Most chapters and even pages of this book are still intact.
This does not mean you can stop just anywhere along the 100 mile long Grand Staircase and see all 525 million years of this history. Earth’s curvature will not let you do that.
As this illustration shows, the exposed cliff faces of the tilted rock formations look like a staircase. The pink cliffs at Bryce Canyon are the top step of the staircase.
This section has a rectangle illustration with three small color rectangle illustrations aligned in a straight row within the frame. The three small illustrations are of the same large rock wall. The view of the illustrations are from the same angle showing the impact from weathering and erosion over time. There is a blue sky in all illustrations.
IMAGE 1 of 3: Canyon Wall or Fin.
The first illustration on the left is a tall solid rough textured limestone rock wall with a blue sky above the wall.
SYNOPSIS: The rock wall rises above a rubble hill. The wall has orange, gold, pink, and tan horizontal layers which blend and fade to a faint grey and light tan on the top. The wall has a rough bulbous texture and is fairly straight vertically and horizontally. The top of the rock formation varies in height and is jagged.
The rock is limestone of inconsistent hardness and density.
CAPTION: Canyon Wall or Fin
CREDIT: NPS / KEVIN DOXSTATER
IMAGE 2 of 3: Windows
The second illustration is the same wall with large irregularly shaped holes in the wall. The blue sky appears through the holes.
The holes, also called windows, have been created by weathering and erosion over thousands of years. The strongest rock, generally at the top, is slower to erode which helps create the framework for the windows and supports the top of the wall.
The windows have been formed by a process called frost wedging. Bryce Canyon is located on a high elevation plateau and winters are snowy and cold. Temperatures drop below freezing at night and as midday temperatures rise above freezing the ice and snow melts and trickles into the cracks. When the temperatures drop below freezing again at night and early mornings the ice expands and the pressure cracks and chisels the rocks. Because the rock wall is limestone the erosion rate is inconsistent throughout the wall creating interesting forms and shapes.
CREDIT: NPS / KEVIN DOXSTATER
IMAGE 3 of 3: Hoodoo
The third illustration is the same wall with significant change from erosion over thousands of years.
The top of the windows have collapsed leaving individual stacked rock formations called hoodoos.
The hoodoos are uniquely beautiful sometimes described as spiracles, sandcastles, people, animals, or objects from myths and legends.
CREDIT: NPS / KEVIN DOXSTATER
Hoodoos don’t grow like trees but are eroded out of the cliffs where rows of narrow walls form. These thin walls of rock are called fins. Frost-wedging enlarges cracks in the fins, creating holes or windows. As windows grow, their tops eventually collapse, leaving a column. Rain further dissolves and sculpts these limestone pillars into bulbous spires called hoodoos. The delicate climatic balance between snow and rain ensures that new hoodoos will emerge while others become reduced to lumps of clay.
The back of the brochure is titled Exploring Bryce Canyon. It includes text, two maps, a handful of wildflower pictures visitors can find at Bryce, and a photograph of a park ranger beside a large telescope. All of the text and images are imposed over a photograph of the nighttime sky and canyon walls of Bryce. The sky is speckled with dots of light, small masses of clouds and it ranges in brightness.
The text of the back of the brochure explains what visitors can find at the park, including lodging and tours, camping, weather, hiking, regulations and more.
The maps include details such as park boundaries, roadways, location of the visitor center, bathrooms and much more.
A large, vertical, rectangular map of Bryce Canyon National Park and its surrounding area
A map of Bryce Canyon National Park and the surrounding area with a focus on roads, trails, overlooks, amenities, and landforms. The main roads are State Route 63 and State Route 12. State Route 63 runs north to south and is bisected by State Route 12 which runs east to west. The majority of Bryce Canyon lies immediately to the east of Route 63 and south of Route 12.
The northern section of Bryce Canyon National Park, including Mossy Cave Trail, is accessed via South Route 12 east of the State Routes 63 and 12 junction. The entrance to the national park is 2 miles south of the junction on State Route 63. The rest of the park is accessed via 18 miles on State Route 63. Just over the entrance is the Fairyland Point viewpoint. The fee station and Visitor Center are at Mile 1 of State Route 63. Sunrise Point, Sunset Point, Inspiration Point, Bryce Point, and Paria Point viewpoints are located between Miles 1 and 3. This area is further detailed in another map to the right. State Route 63 continues south past viewpoints, trailheads, and picnic areas and ends at Rainbow Point, Mile 18 of State Route 63.
Bathrooms are located at Mossy Cave, the Visitor Center, Sunset Point, Farview Point, and Rainbow Point. The shuttle runs from Bryce Canyon City south to Bryce Point. The Visitor Center also has a telephone and water fountain. There are campsites and picnic areas located throughout the park.
The major trails include:
The Rim Trail parallels Route 63 on the edge of the plateau above the amphitheater from Fairyland Point at Mile 0 to Bryce Point off an access road at Mile 3.
The Fairyland Loop Trail from Fairyland Point into the amphitheater and back up to the plateau.
The Under-the-Rim Trail from Bryce Point south to Rainbow Point in the amphitheater.
And the Riggs Spring Loop Trail from Rainbow Point into the amphitheater and back up to the plateau at Yovimpa Point.
A vertical map depicting the entirety of Bryce Canyon National Park and the surrounding area. The park boundary is highlighted in green, has a blocky boundary defined by survey lines rather than natural features. It runs narrowly north to south along the eastern edge of the Paunsaugunt Plateau and is surrounded by Dixie National Forest shown with a tan color. Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument lies to the east. Though the focus of the map is the location and names of roads, trails, overlooks, amenities, landforms, and political boundaries it has a topographical underlay revealing the contours of the landscape. From this, one can see that the cliffs of the Paunsaugunt Plateau's eastern edge run north to south through the middle of the park and meet the Amphitheater.
The main roads are Route 63 and Route 12. Route 63 runs north to south and is bisected by Route 12 which runs east to west. The majority of Bryce Canyon lies immediately to the east of Route 63 and south of Route 12. A shared use path runs west on Route 12 and south down Route 63 to Inspiration Point in Bryce Canyon National Park.
The northern most point of Bryce Canyon National Park is accessed via Route 12 on the east side of the Route 63 and12 intersection. There are three lookouts along Route 12 and the entrance to the Mossy Cave Trail roughly 3 miles east of the intersection. The Mossy Cave Trail is just under one half mile and ends in a mossy cave and waterfall. Bathrooms are available at the trailhead.
Bryce Canyon City is the northern most point of interest on Route 63, just south of the Route 63 and Route 12 intersection, prior to entering the national park. There is Shuttle Parking and Boarding Area just south of Bryce Canyon City on the east side of Route 63.
About a mile south of Bryce Canyon City, and just south of the national park's northern border, is a 1 mile access road leading east to Fairyland Point and the northernmost trailhead for the Rim Trail. The Rim Trail curves south about 5.5 miles overlooking the amphitheater semi-paralleling Route 63 to Bryce Point. The Fairyland Loop Trail also starts at Fairyland Point and loops east into the amphitheater and southwest before linking back with the Rim Trail.
On Route 63, at Mile 1 south of northern park border, is the fee center and visitor center. The visitor center has bathrooms, a phone, a water fountain, and a shuttle stop.
On Route 63, between Miles 1 and 2, is a loop access road leading to Sunrise Point overlook, the shared-use path, the Rim Trail, a shuttle stop, and a campground.
On Route 63, just after Mile 2, is a short access road leading to Sunset Point overlook, the shared-use path, a shuttle stop, and the Rim Trail.
On Route 63, at Mile 2.5 is another campground and shuttle stop as well as a short access road leading east to Inspiration Point, a shuttle stop, and the southernmost part of the shared use path. A 2-mile access road branches off southeast and coming to a "T" intersection. The north branch leads to Bryce Point overlook, the southern most entrance to the Rim Trail, and a shuttle stop. The southern branch leads to Paria View overlook. There is a warning that Route 63 south of the access road to Bryce Point and Paria View may be closed during snow storms.
There is a rectangular outline around the area from the northern border of the park to Mile 4 on Route 63 with the title "See map at right," for a more detailed view.
Paralleling Route 63, and winding south from Mile 3 to Mile 18, starting at Bryce Point and ending at Rainbow Point, is the Under-the-Rim Trail that goes into the amphitheater. There are campsites at Right Fork Yellow Creek, Yellow Creek Group Site, and Yellow Creek. It meets with the Swamp Canyon Loop Trail that loops to Route 63 at Mile 6. The Under-the-Rim Trail continues south and meets the Whiteman Connecting Trail that leads west to Route 63, 9 miles south of the border of the park. The Under-the-Rim Trail continues south passing the Swamp Canyon campsite and the Natural Bridge Campsite. It meets the Agua Canyon Connecting Trail which leads west to Mile 14.75 on Route 63. It continues pass the Iron Spring Campsite and ends at Rainbow Point, Mile 18 on Route 63.
On Route 63, at mile 4.75, there is a picnic area on the western side of the road. At Mile 6, is the Swamp Canyon Overlook, and between mile 9 and 10 are two overlooks, Piracy Point and Fairview Point. There are bathrooms at Fairview Point. At Mile 12.5 is Natural Bridge Overlook and at Mile 13.5 is Agua Canyon Overlook. At Mile 14.75 is Ponderosa Canyon Overlook and the entrance to Agua Canyon Connecting Trail. Mile 16.3 is Birch Black Canyon Overlook and at the end of Route 63, at Mile 18, is Yovimpa Point and Rainbow Point. There are bathrooms and a picnic area at Rainbow Point.
The trailhead for the Bristlecone Loop Trail and the longer Riggs Spring Trail start at Rainbow Point. The Riggs Spring Trail winds east down into the amphitheater south and west within the amphitheater, passing the Corral Hollow campsite, the Riggs Spring Campsite, the Group site, northwest passing the Yovimpa Pass campsite, and back northeast to Yovimpa Point.
Start here for information, exhibits, a movie, publications, backcountry permits, and emergency services. Open daily; closed Thanksgiving and December 25, with longer hours April to October. The park road follows the plateau rim for much of its 18 miles. In summer free shuttle buses serve the most popular facilities and overlooks. For more information or changes to hours, activities, and programs check the park website or call 435.834.5322.
Rangers offer talks, evening programs, and guided walks year round. Topics range from geology and wildlife to astronomy. Check at the visitor center for the full range of programs.
For information about the lodge visit www.brycecanyonforever.com, or call 4 3 5, 8 3 4, 8 7 0 0, Year round lodging is offered nearby. Sign up for horseback tours at the lodge, or contact Canyon Trail Rides: 4 3 5, 6 7 9, 8 6 6 5, www.canyonrides.com.
Over 200 sites, tent and RV, fees apply, are available at North and Sunset campgrounds with water and restrooms nearby. North Campground is reservation based May 27th through October 15th. Sites can be reserved up to 6 months in advance via Recreation.gov. North Campground offers first come first served camping October 16th through May 26th. For Reservations contact 8 7 7, 4 4 4, 6 7 7 7, or visit recreation.gov. Only Loop A is open in winter. At Sunset Campground all RV and tent sites are first come first served. One group site can be reserved. contact 8 7 7, 4 4 4, 6 7 7 7, or visit recreation.gov.
For ADA sites contact BRCA_Information@nps.gov
Sunset Campground is closed in winter.
No hook ups are available.
An RV dump station, fees apply, is located near North Campground in summer. A store near Sunrise Point parking area sells food and supplies in peak season and has coin operated shower and laundry facilities. Bring or buy firewood; gathering wood in the park is prohibited.
Over 65 miles of hiking trails offer close encounters with hoodoos. Trails start from overlooks along the main park road. Get details at the visitor center. Carry drinking water, wear hiking boots, and remember, your return is uphill. Overnight backpacking is allowed on the Under the Rim and Riggs Spring Loop trails only. Permits are required for overnight backcountry use, fees apply.
Permits for March 1 through November 30, become available for reservation on recreation.gov 3 months in advance of today’s date.
Permits for winter backcountry camping, December 1 through the last day of February are only available in person at the Bryce Canyon Visitor Center. Winter backcountry permits are not available through recreation.gov.
Advanced reservations close 24 hours prior to a trip start date, but unsold sites are available within 24 hours of the start date at the visitor center from 9 AM to 3 30 PM.
After making your online backcountry reservation, you must meet with a ranger at the Bryce Canyon Visitor Center to obtain your physical backcountry permit.
Permits must be picked up in person by 2 PM mountain time the day of your trip or your reservation will be cancelled.
Visit Bryce Canyon Backcountry Info for important current regulations.
From April through October days are pleasant, nights, cool. Thunderstorms are common in summer. Winter days are brisk and bright. Most overlooks are open in winter.
EMERGENCIES call 9 1 1 or the Garfield County Sheriff’s office at 4 3 5, 6 7 6, 2 4 1 1.
A large color map
This is a color map highlighting the main area of the park known as the Bryce Amphitheater. This map is a close up of the area focusing on the roads, trails, geologic features, and other amenities offered. The main road, State Route 63, extends along the left side of the map with the amphitheater area and most of the amenities to the right of it. In the lower left hand corner there is a map key and in the lower right hand corner there is a north arrow and scale bar to indicate distances.
This is a detail map of the amphitheater area of the park. Its primary purpose is way finding. It is oriented with north at the top and covers an area of approximately eight square miles. Highway 63 is depicted as a red line running north south on the left side of the map through the national park plateau area. This portion of the map begins slightly north of the park entrance sign where it indicates the road will continue north to Bryce Canyon City and extends down until it curves to the bottom left edge of the map where it indicates the road will eventually lead to Rainbow Point.
On the left edge and upper left corner of the map, a small area outlined by a green box indicates Dixie National Forest land.
The Shared use path is indicated by a green dashed line and runs parallel to Highway 63, crossing the highway from west to east just north of Fairyland Point, continuing south to the Visitor Center parking area where it crosses east to west and continues south approximately 2 and three quarter miles to Inspiration Point.
On the right side of the map there is a darker tan colored area that indicates the boundaries of the main amphitheater. Along the edge of this darker area is a dashed black line indicating the Rim Trail which curves from Fairyland Point at the top down to Bryce Point at the lower right. The portion between Inspiration Point and Bryce Point is closed during winter.
A green dotted line extends from Sunrise point indicating a horse trail. It becomes a green dot and black dashed line at Peekaboo Trail where it becomes a horse and hiking trail. A black dashed line extends east from the Peekaboo connector trail indicating a trail that leads to the town of Tropic.
Numerous trails and amenities are indicated on the map and are listed by location, moving from north to south:
Fairyland Point overlook and parking area, located north of the Fee Stations and Visitor Center, mile marker quarter mile. Fairyland Loop Trailhead.
Fee Stations, mile marker one,
Visitor Center, mile marker one. Ranger Station, restrooms, drinking water, telephone, visitor center shuttle station, inbound and outbound.
North Campground, mile marker one. Drinking water, campground, picnic area, outdoor theater, RV dump station summer only.
General Store, mile marker one and a quarter. Parking area, showers, laundry, food, restrooms, drinking water, telephone.
Sunrise Point, mile marker one and a quarter. Viewpoint and Queens Garden trailhead. Parking area, Sunrise Point shuttle station, outbound, horse corral.
Bryce Canyon Lodge, mile marker one and a half. Restaurant, restrooms, drinking water, telephone, Bryce Canyon Lodge shuttle station, outbound.
Sunset Point, mile marker two. Viewpoint and Navajo Loop Trail. Wall Street side of Navajo Loop Trail is closed in winter. Parking area, restrooms, drinking water, picnic area, Sunset Point shuttle station, outbound.
Sunset Campground, mile marker two and a quarter: Viewpoint. Drinking water, camping, Sunset Campground shuttle stop, inbound and outbound.
Inspiration Point, turn off at mile marker two and three quarters. Three viewpoints, lower, middle and upper, restrooms, summer only, Inspiration Point shuttle station, outbound.
Bryce Point, turn off at mile marker two and three quarters. Viewpoint and Peekaboo Trail, restroom on trail, summer only, Hat Shop trail, and Under the Rim, to Rainbow Point, trail. Parking area, Bryce Point shuttle station, outbound.
Paria View, turn off at mile marker two and three quarters. Closed in winter. Viewpoint, Parking area.
A group of five, small, square, color photos of flowers positioned in a column under the title, Wildflowers of Bryce. The images are surrounded by a border that starts as black at the top of the column and transitions to dark blue and then to navy blue by the last image at the bottom of the column. Each image is surrounded by a thin black outline. The captions below each image are in bold with white lettering.
IMAGE 1 of 5: Bronze evening primrose
A close up photo of yellow flower.
The first image in the column shows a Bronze evening primrose. This small, square photo is a close up of a yellow flower. The flower has four smooth, light yellow colored petals extending from a dark orange center. A cluster of darker yellow stamen protrude from the center of the petals. Behind the yellow flower appear long, narrow green leaves slightly curling into themselves and arising from a bed of reddish orange petals.
This flower has four light yellow petals encircling a cluster of darker yellow stamen. The smooth petals are broad and rounded in an inverted triangular shape. The petals gather at the center of the flower in a dark orange circle. Dark yellow green veining flares out from this dark orange center. The narrow, yellow stamen protrude from the center of the petals. The last quarter of the stamen have a fuzzy texture, and gently bend back toward the petals in different directions. Underneath the image, in white lettering, is the caption, Bronze evening primrose and with the credit to Ron Wolf.
IMAGE 2 of 5: Markagunt penstemon
A close up color photo of a cluster of purple flowers.
The second image in the column shows a Markagunt penstemon. The photo is a close up of a cluster of tubular, blue violet flowers jutting off a tall stem. Each flower faces a different direction and consists of five light purple petals, some with blue edges. There are two petals on the top and three on the bottom. These petals funnel to a yellow center ringed by darker purple. They are attached to a stem in shadow with branching jagged small green leaves.
This is a close up photo of a cluster of tubular, blue violet flowers jutting off a tall stem. The six flowers face in differing directions, and one is centered in the image facing the camera and fully in focus. Of the remaining five flowers, two are above, one to the right, and two are below the center flower. As these flowers turn away from the camera to the right or left, they become increasingly out of focus. The flowers consist of five light purple petals, some with blue edges. There are two petals on the top and three on the bottom. These petals funnel to a yellow center ringed by darker purple. They are attached to a stem in shadow with jagged, small, dark green and orange leaves branching off. The completely blurred background color transitions from light green to darker green further away from the flower. Underneath the image, in white lettering, is the caption, Markagunt penstemon and the credit to KEVIN DOXSTATER.
IMAGE 3 of 5: Sego lily
A close up color photo of a white flower.
The third image in the column shows a Sego lily. This small photo is a close up of a white flower with three large, smooth white petals. The petals have broad, rounded tips and narrow into a point at the center of the flower. In between each of the large petals are three narrow white petals with light yellow and pink veining and pointed ends. The white flower stands out against the blurred background of green, white, purple, and red grasses.
This is a close up photo of a white flower with three large, smooth white petals facing 2, 6, and 11 o clock. The petals have broad, rounded tips and narrow into a point at the center of the flower. At the narrow end of these petals, closest to the center, are brightly colored yellow circles with dark red veining. The outer vein shaped like an arch and the inner vein is a partially closed circle that is white, yellow, and reddish. In between each of the large petals are three narrow white petals with light yellow and pink veining and pointed ends. These narrower petals have red, upward curves close to the center of the flower. There are seven white stamen projecting from the center with fuzzy, white orange tips. The white flower stands out against the blurred background of green, white, purple, and red grasses. Below the image, in white lettering, is the caption, Sego lily, Utah’s state flower and the credit to CORY MAYLETT.
IMAGE 4 of 5: Rock columbine
A close up photo of three light purple flowers.
The fourth image in the column shows a Rock columbine. A small square photo of three light purple flowers projecting from the bottom right corner of the image. Each flower has five petals in the shape of a star with five inner heart shaped petals. The petals encircle a cluster of yellow stamen. The flowers are positioned at the end of green stems. The flower looking toward the left is in profile and five light purple spikes can been seen extending backwards around the stem.
This is a close up photo of three light purple flowers projecting from the right bottom corner of the image. Each flower has five purple petals in the shape of a star with an inner ring of five heart-shaped petals. The inner petals are a lighter shade of purple. The petals encircle a cluster of yellow stamen extending from the center of the flower. The ends of each stamen appear fuzzy. Two of the flowers face the camera and one flower faces left. The flowers are positioned at the end of green stems with several green orange buds and small green leaves protruding from the stems. The flower facing the viewer's left is in profile and shows five light purple petal spikes extending backwards from the back of the flower. The background is blurred, but trees with green leaves, brown trunks, and yellow, red grass can be seen. Underneath the image, in white lettering, is the caption, Rock columbine, and the credit to STEPH ABEGG.
IMAGE 5 of 5: Scarlet gilia
A close up photo of a cluster of red flowers.
The fifth image in the column shows a Scarlet gilia. A small square photo of five shiny, red flowers extending from the top left side of the image towards the top center. Three flowers are open, and their petals create thin star shapes. Two flowers are not open and are bulbous shaped. The flowers extend from a slightly blurred stem of small, spikey green leaves. The background of the image is blurred.
The three shiny red flowers face toward the viewer's right roughly forty five degrees. The petals have red and white mottled coloration. Clusters of stamen with red stems and light green tips extend from the center of each flower. Two flowers are not open and are bulbous shaped. The flowers extend from a slightly blurred stem of small, spikey green leaves. The background of the image shows out of focus pockets of muted, earth tones. Underneath the image, in white lettering, is the caption, Scarlet gilia, and the credit to KEVIN DOXSTATER.
IMAGE 1 of 2: Dark Ranger
Small photo of a park ranger standing beside a large tubular telescope.
A park ranger wearing the official uniform of a wide brimmed hat, long sleeve shirt with arm patch and gold badge, a tie and cargo pants stands beside a telescope that is roughly as tall as he is. The telescope has an approximate 2 foot diameter and is connected to a metal base with a round bottom and sides supporting it's weight. There is a small, roughly foot long eye piece that is attached in parallel above one side of the larger telescope. There is another perpendicular piece that closely resembles a large camera lens attached to the larger telescope beside the other smaller scope.
A Bryce Canyon Dark Ranger shows off one of the powerful telescopes you can use in the park’s Night Sky programs.
CREDIT: N P S / KEVIN POE
IMAGE 2 of 2: Background image of night sky
The text, map, and other images are imposed on a nighttime scene of the canyon and starry sky.
The nighttime photograph shows the jagged canyon walls sloping to a lower valley with trees, a bright spot in a nook of land in the distance, and a sky ranging in shades of darkness, dotted with specks of light. The sky appears lightest closest to the horizon. There are darker regions of clouds dispersed randomly. The Milky Way can be seen as a hazy, lighter band extending across the sky. There's enough light to see the exposure of rock face in the canyon; showing the horizontal lines and rough edges created by eons of weather.
CREDIT: TYLER NORDGREN
High elevation, clean dry air, and lack of light pollution make Bryce Canyon one of Earth’s darkest places. With our Dark Rangers’ help, Bryce Canyon offers you ultimate stargazing. High quality darkness is ablaze with starlight. On moonless nights the Milky Way looks like a huge silvery rainbow from horizon to horizon. Venus and Jupiter are so bright they create shadows.
Powerful telescopes reveal the new stars inside nursery nebulae, shock waves from exploded stars, and ancient globular clusters seem like diamonds on black velvet. Millions of light years beyond, but reached by our telescopes, other galaxies of all shapes and sizes inspire the imagination. Making the most of a bright full moon, our Dark Rangers offer guided night hikes among the moonlit hoodoos. Bryce Canyon is the perfect place to see why astronomy fascinates so many people. Use our website to plan your stellar visit.
The visitor center offers a free accessibility guide describing wheelchair negotiable facilities, viewpoints and pathways. Tactile relief maps of the Bryce Canyon amphitheater and the Grand staircase region can be found in the visitor center, along with an audio described park film played every thirty minutes starting at 8:05 AM and ending one hour before the visitor center closes. Audio description tours for the museum in the visitor center. A free Braille translation of the text in this Brochure is also available at the Visitor Center. The National Park Service App offers audio tours for the outdoor areas of the park.
We strive to make facilities, services, and programs accessible to all. Buildings, restrooms, many viewpoints, and the trail between Sunset and Sunrise points are wheelchair accessible. Accessible campsites are available in summer. Service animals are allowed. For information go to a visitor center, ask a ranger, call, or check the park website. www.nps.gov/BRCA
EMERGENCIES call 9 1 1 or the Garfield County Sheriff’s office at 4 3 5, 6 7 6, 2 4 1 1
ADDRESS: PO Box 6 4 0 2 0 1, Bryce, UT, 8 4 7 6 4
PHONE: 4 3 5, 8 3 4, 5 3 2 2
Bryce Canyon is one of over 400 parks in the National Park System. Learn more about national parks and National Park Service programs at w w w dot n p s dot gov.
National Park Foundation. Join the park community. www.nationalparks.org