This set of photos include Snow Canyon, just west of I-15 in Southern
Utah, Coral Pink Sands State Park
which is just southeast of Zion, Bryce National Park and the nearby Red
Canyon National Forest.
These are the very red rocks of Snow Canyon. There has never been
snow in Snow Canyon. It's
name came from an early Mormon settler named Snow.
Here are more of the amazingly red cliffs of Snow.
Not everything in Snow Canyon is red. Here is a sample of some of
the whitish grey hillsides with black
volcanic material in the background. Snow Canyon is Red, White
After going through Snow Canyon, we headed a bit further west to follow
a dirt road Utah calls a Backway.
It took us south through beautiful county much of which was a Piute
Reservation. We enjoyed this winding
dirt road for well over an hour before returning to Interstate 15 and
heading back east. We passed a big
reservoir in these hills and talked to the Park Ranger who said it
would be empty by mid August as it was
used by local farmers for irrigation water. The water in the
reservoir was mostly Spring snow melt.
The next day, we drove east through part of Zion and south on Route 89
to visit Coral Pink Sands State Park.
This is a little gem of a park well worth a couple of hours trip out of
your way. This was our first stopping point.
The Park is a Valley where sand has piled up over the centuries from a
gap at the western end between two
Note the nearby flowers fill the mid distant field and almost match the
sand dunes beyond.
A little further down the valley, I climbed up a dune near the road
that was only about 100 feet up,
but with the soft sand, quite a challenge to climb. It was worth
it to see the Dunes close up.
Apparently they are constantly reshifting shapes as the wind blows down
There were rocky cliffs with some trees on the far side. I would
guess that the valley here is less
than a half mile across.
Below is a photo of my foot print while climbing back down the dune to
the Van. The sand
was very dry, but apparently my weight compacted the sand just a bit to
make a rise where
my foot had been and the sand then fell away from around that
While I was looking down, I found this little guy making his way across
the path down the dune.
Near the end of the Coral Pink Sands State Park, one can see the gap
where the winds enter the valley
and a large set of dunes across the valley. I guess the valley
might be well over a mile wide here.
On our way back to Route 89, we stopped to capture this amazing valley
of orange flowers.
And just after we headed north on 89, we stopped to capture these blue
that seem to be growing out of pure red rock.
We made several visits to Bryce Canyon which is something not to
miss. This is a vew from Bryce Point,
a major overlook in the Park - camera pointing southeast.
This is later in the day looking more east, northeast.
At the north end of Bryce Point is an amazing collection of what are
called Hoodoos. The trees
you see in this picture are large 60-80 foot high trees, to give you
some perspective on the height of
Please notice the trees growing on top of this amazing feature. They
were 20 or 30 feet tall themselves!
Dave at Agua Point in Bryce Canyon National Park
Another very narrow set of Hoodoo features.
Cliffs through cliffs.
Late Afternoon the far cliffs just glowed to match the nearby hills
along Bryce Canyon main drive. You can see
the small town down in the valley in near distance.
We got up early the day we heading north to Capital Reef and made one
visit to Bryce to capture the big Hoodoo scene at Bryce Point in early
This white feature is along the path to the viewpoint for the next shot
a panarama of hoodoos at Bryce Point.
Panarama of hoodoos. This is three vertical shots stitched
together in PhotoShop.
When we left Bryce, we drove down Route 12 through Red Canyon National
Forest which had red cliffs to rival
Snow Canyon. There are two tunnels along the road. How long
do you suppose these rocks have been perched
on top of this bridge?
That's it for Snow, Bryce, Coral Red Sands, and Red Canyon Parks.
The next set of pictures will include Capital
Reef, Canyonlands and other Utah points of interest a bit further north
in the state.
Next: North from Bryce Through Capital Reef (North into Utah)