Bryce Canyon

Useful Information

Natural Arch, Bryce Canyon NP, Utah. Public Domain.
Open: Park: no restrictions.
Visitor Center: 15-MAR to 07-NOV daily 8-18.
08-NOV to 14-MAR daily 8-16:30.
Closed Thanksgiving, 25-DEC.
Fee: Private Vehicle USD 35, Motorcycle USD 30, Per Person USD 20, Annual Pass USD 40.
Classification: GorgeGorge
Light: n/a
Guided tours:
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography: Frank DeCourten (1994): Shadows of Time, the Geology of Bryce Canyon National Park, Bryce Canyon Natural History Association.
Address: Bryce Canyon National Park, P.O Box 640201, Bryce, UT 84764, Tel: +1-435-834-5322.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.



Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah. Old Mammoth Road. Public Domain.
Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah. Old Mammoth Road. Carol M. Highsmith’s America, Library of Congress. Public Domain.

Bryce Canyon is famous for erosional pinnacles which are locally called hoodoos. They are a result of irregular erosion. If the sedimentary rock contain areas of harder rock, for example a nodule of flintstone in chert or limestone, the erosion will remove the surrounding rocks but not the rock below the hard patch. The result is a pillar or pyramid. Such erosional pyramids exist all over the world, but Bryce Canyon is probably the largest accumulation of such pyramids in the world. And with the colourful sedimentary rock, in green yellow, red and white, they are also the most beautiful.

We classified this site as a canyon, but its not really a canyon. Of course there are rivers which drain the area and remove the material to create the hoodoos. But those are not narrow gorges, the whole area is more like a huge bowl, that's why it is generally called amphitheatre.