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Published: September 25th 2011
19th Sept ’11 Bryce Canyon. Well the most outstanding thing about this park is the rock formations! They are known as The Hoodoos and look just like people!! One is even called Queen Victoria and various presidents have been compared to some of the others!
We did a 3 mile hike down from Sunrise Point at the top of the rim to the Queen’s Gardens which although it had steep drop offs I coped with them as they were mainly shielded by rocks, we made our way through rock archways and down to the canyon floor. The rocks were all beautiful reds, pinks and yellows. We then went along Navajo Loop which winds through the rock formations, with trees and shade. We saw birds and chipmunks here and then went back up the trail to Sunset Point. This was via a series of switchback paths all enclosed in a narrow canyon with very steep walls (I did have a little freak at this point!) It was a pretty strenuous climb out! The area was called the Amphitheatre and you could see why, marvellous!
We had managed to pre book places on the Rainbow Tour bus trip to the furthest
point in the park – it only ran twice a day so we were lucky to get on or so we thought....... Apart from a couple of young Japanese girls it was full of American pensioners, this meant every time the bus stopped at the various view points it took 5 minutes for them all to get off, then 5 minutes viewing followed by another 5 minutes loading them all back on again!!!
The bus driver was great though a really good laugh who regaled us all with stories about Butch Cassidy (who grew up in the area) and the Sundance Kid. Stories which were told to him by a friend who he called grandma who was 89 and had seen Butch Cassidy as a youngster. The stories were all about their exploits – known by locals, and how they did not die in Bolivia but back in the USA from ‘natural causes’.
Grandma saw Butch Cassidy at his mother’s death bed in hospital when she was a young nurse (this was after they had supposedly been killed in Bolivia). Another local friend had seen him at the grave yard standing amongst the trees when his mother was buried,
but apparently Butch’s family would never say anything about him – they did not want him captured. Yet another friend’s uncle happened across Butch’s family in the middle of nowhere in the mountains near Circleville – where Butch had bought his parents a house, they were all together going out in 2 surries, they then stopped a began digging a hole and placed a long heavy object in it and he reckons that is where Butch Cassidy is buried!
Thank god for the bus driver and his stories I say, I had had enough of the ‘views’ and the 10 minutes on and off time by then!!!!!
On our way back to Cedar City, when leaving Bryce Canyon, we passed the gully where he kept his ‘stash’ – fresh horses and food for when he was escaping the posses!
All of Utah is very heavily Mormon as the early settlers made this area their home ,Bryce Cannon was named after one of these Mormon settlers. There were Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints churches everywhere!
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