The people at Ruby's Inn provided these itinerary ideas for the Bryce Canyon National Park area. Visit Ruby's Inn for more details on how to have a great vacation at an affordable price. www.RubysInn.com
Bryce Canyon National Park
Best Western Ruby's Inn is located two minutes from the entrance to Bryce Canyon National Park. There is a visitor center and museum in the park. Colorful rock formations, pines and sweeping vistas are photographers' favorites. Popular activities include hiking and sightseeing. Recommended hike start Sunset Point: Navajo and Queen's Garden Trails, 3 miles (4.8 km), takes 2 to 3 hours and climbs 521 feet (159 meters). This is a moderately strenuous walk. Bryce Canyon (Finish seeing the entire park). Best Western Ruby's Inn is located one mile from the entrance to Bryce Canyon National Park.
Zion National Park
1.5 hr drive from Rubys Inn, allow at least a half-day to see Zion. Zion National Park is located 83 miles from Best Western Ruby's Inn. Zion is noted for the towering rock monoliths and cliffs, the Virgin River and Zion Canyon. It is also a photographer's paradise. Hiking, sightseeing, and horseback rides are among the park's activities. Hiking the Zion Narrows requires a permit. You may wish to hike the trails to Emerald Pools, Weeping Rock and the "Narrows" that begins at the Temple of Sinewava. Be sure to stop at the turnout to shoot photos of the park's most famous formation "The Great White Throne." For more adventurous hikers, ask us for more information about "Angel's Landing" and other back country adventures. If you'd like to make a loop out of your trip, you can exit out the west entrance of the park and then off the road at the town of Rockville and venture to the old Ghost Town of Grafton. Here you'll see an old school house and other buildings from the early settlers of this community. It is also the location of a famous movie scene from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. From here you'll follow the well-graded dirt road up the hill and around toward the community of Apple Valley. You'll pass the Smith's Mesa and circle onto highway 59 and drive through Hildale on to Pipe Spring National Monument, a fort constructed for protection from the Indians along the Arizona Strip. A quick loop through Kanab and then its back to Ruby's at the end of an unforgettable day.
Grand Canyon National Park
Grand Canyon North Rim is a 3 hr drive from Rubys Inn. The quiet North Rim is located 160 miles south of Bryce along US 89 and US 89A, then Hwy 67. The drive is spectacular as you pass by Coral Pink Sand Dunes, just a short drive off Highway 89 (7 miles), with beautiful views of reddish colored sand dunes that are well worth the detour. Continuing on you will pass through the quaint western town of Kanab, also known as "Little Hollywood" because of the many classic westerns that were filmed there. Leaving Kanab you will start your ascent up the Kaibab Plateau and through the dense forest of Ponderosa Pines. Keep an eye out for wild turkeys, mule deer and other wildlife along the way. The north rim of the Grand Canyon is higher than the south rim allowing for spectacularvistas and incredible and unique photo opportunities.This is different than Zion National Park where you are looking up at formations, at the Grand Canyon you are on top looking down at it all. There is a visitor center and a museum at the park with maps and information available. Driving along the roads overlooking the canyon, hiking and trail rides are among the many activities available. At many places on the rim there are many trails that you can hike on. You may hike from point to point on the rim or even down into the canyon. Just remember that you are at a high elevationand that wherever you hike down, you'll need to hike back up. Take a water bottle with you even for a short hike. You'll need your camera and plenty of film or memory cards for your digital camera. The drive back from the north Rim is another scenery rich ride complete with views of the Grand Staircase.
Capitol Reef is a 2 hr drive from Rubys Inn; allow a half-day in the park. Capitol Reef National Park features colorful cliffs, the Capitol Dome, and the small village of Fruita. The park's entrance is near the junction of Hwy 12 and Hwy 24. There is a visitor center and museum. Hiking, scenic drives, and bicycling are popular activities. To get back to Rubys Inn, travel west on Hwy 24 to the town of Koosharem, proceed on Hwy 62 to Otter Creek, turn left on Hwy 22 passing through the small farming community of Antimony and continue on to Rubys Inn.
Cedar Breaks is a 1-hour drive (47 miles) from Rubys Inn. Travel north on US-89 to Panguitch, turning left on to Hwy 143. Cedar Breaks is located on Hwy 143 past Panguitch Lake. Like a miniature Bryce Canyon, Cedar Breaks sits high on a forested plateau. During the summer months, hiking and mountain biking are very popular. The mountain bike trails of Cedar Breaks and the surrounding forest area are world famous. In winter, heavy snows force the closure of Hwy 148 and this area becomes a popular snowmobile and cross country ski destination. Snowboarding and skiing are also very common with Brian Head Ski Resort nearby. There is a visitor center with restroom facilities located at Cedar Breaks and picnic areas are open during summer months.
The Glen Canyon Dam is located along US 89 near the Utah/Arizona border. From Ruby's Inn it is a 2 hour and 20 minute drive to the Glen Canyon Dam or 2 hours and 15 minutes to Bullfrog. To get to Bullfrog Marina drive east on Hwy 12 to Boulder, then south on the Burr Trail. Lake Powell extends 186 miles through Utah and into Arizona. Water sports, houseboats, and fishing are among the popular activities. Slot canyons and the moon-like landscape surrounding the lake make up the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. Hiking and photography are popular. Ancient Indian ruins are located throughout the area. Boat rentals are available at the lake but should be reserved in advance. Allow at least a half day to see Lake Powell.
Located 30 minutes drive time from Bryce, this the 1.7 million acre mostly wilderness area was recently designated a national monument. There are ancient Indian ruins, desert canyons, fossils and unique rock formations. Much of the area is only accessible on foot. Grosvenor Arch, located south of Cannonville and Kodachrome Basin, is the nearest attraction to Bryce. It is accesssed via a dirt road that is impassible when wet. Another popular site, Lower Calf Creek Falls located on Hwy 12 near Boulder, is well worth the 2-1/2 mile hike to the cascading waterfall.
Kodachrome Basin, located 25 minutes from Rubys Inn, is an impressive array of massive sandstone chimneys that seem to ever be changing in color from gray and white to several shades of red and orange, depending on the day's weather. Numerous rocks formations and coves offer solitude and a quiet, unique beauty only found in the desert . There is a Day use fee of $5.00 and you want to allow a half to full day including travel time. Be sure to allow a stop at Grosvenor Arch, located just nine miles south of Kodachrome Basin State Park.
Calf Creek / Anasazi State Park
Calf Creek Recreation Area is a 1-½ hour drive from Rubys Inn. Calf Creek Recreation Area lies between Escalante and Boulder on Scenic Byway 12. There is a $2 per vehicle day use fee. Calf Creek Falls is one of the West's best kept secrets. This 2 and 3/4 mile (one way) interpretive trail begins from the Calf Creek campground This hike is moderately difficult on a developed sandy trail, which ends at 126-foot-high Calf Creek Falls.
Anasazi State Park in Boulder is a 15-minute drive east of Calf Creek. This ancient Indian village in the heart of Utah's canyon country was one of the largest Anasazi communities west of the Colorado River. The site is believed to have been occupied from 1050 to 1200 A.D. The village remains largely unexcavated, but many artifacts have been unearthed and can be seen on display in the newly remodeled museum. There is a day use fee of $5.00.