“A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for” – John A. Shedd
On Christmas Day, we completed the stunning classic figure eight hike in Bryce Canyon National Park, which includes the Navajo and Beekaboo Loops.
In addition to the usual splendid scenery, we were given the extra pleasure of an early-morning snow storm, which brought about an inch of white powder to the delicate red hoodoos. Read about hoodoos here.
Our day began in the snow at at dawn from Sunset Point, where we began our descent into the canyon and made our way on the first part of figure eight configuration-the Navajo Loop. This first part of the hike brings immediate vistas from the rim, which continue to be expansive until you quickly start to plummet among and into the hoodoos below.
After making the descent into the ‘canyon’ from the rim at Navajo, you find yourself down among the hoodoos looking up at them from ground level, which gives you a whole new perspective on their massiveness and clues to the eons of time it has taken to produce such wonders.
Because of the cold weather and constant snow, after coming upon a small overhang we decided it was time to take a break and cook some lunch before continuing on upward for the Beekaboo Loop.
After having the morning glow with the gentle snow fall, I was glad to see that at this point the storm started to pass and the sky began to open up to provide some really nice lighting to get some good captures of the snow-covered formations.
Upon climbing to higher elevations on the Peekaboo Loop Trail, the true nature of the hoodoos came into focus for us, with their towering presence glowing among the delicate blanket of snow and sprinkling of pines.
The majesty of these unique structures, both at a distance and up close, was awe inspiring in this brilliant light and in many ways felt other-worldly and dream-like.
I have to say this was most certainly our best Christmas hike yet and one I’d like to repeat in other seasons to come.