I spent days and days hiking in Bryce Canyon National Park. Sometimes I would just hike in, find a secluded spot to sit and enjoy the views. Other times, I would push myself and do some of the more challenging hikes. I was loving the ease at which I could enjoy this park.
There are a lot of hikes in Bryce Canyon that wind you down through the hoodoos and into the basin of the canyon in a short distance. The extreme decreasing in elevation and the ascent back up was a major cardio work out. On days I was feeling more ambitious, I would do these hikes and be so mesmerized by rock formations, I would barely notice how much my butt was getting kicked. If you ask me, there’s no better way to get exercise.
Everyday the weather was perfect and with my boondocking location so close to the park entrance, I was as content as could be. I felt like I could have stayed in Bryce Canyon forever. The landscape provided ample inspiration for photos and although I was in a National Park, I was able to find plenty of hikes that provided the solitude I prefer. One of my favorite hikes I did was a 4 mile loop that connects Sheep Creek Trail and Swamp Canyon Trail. The landscape changed throughout the hike which kept me guessing and I never saw another soul. Unless you count the group of deer I stumbled upon.
The stars were so bright at night, I decided to experiment with night time photography for the first time! I was pretty pleased with the results considering it was my first attempt.
I had been chatting with my friend Gavin, who I knew from Instagram and became real life friends with in Big Bend, since I had been in Bryce. He lives in Salt Lake City not terribly far from Bryce Canyon, so we thought it might be nice for him to come visit. After a bit of coordinating, Gavin, his boyfriend and a friend were on their way for a quick visit. We did a couple hikes within the park and then took Gavin’s truck to Grand Staircase-Escalante to do a slot canyon hike. I was so grateful that Gavin suggested this hike because it was something I would have had a heck of a time doing on my own. The drive to the trail head was crazy steep and sandy and the hike itself was something I think would have been pretty risky to do solo. There were a lot of obstacles that we had to help each other through and areas that would have been almost impassable without a helping hand or ropes. There was one part in particular that was quite the challenge. There was an attached rope that lowered onto a log, floating in a mud pit. I think the mud was higher than normal because the log really didn’t seem to do much.
Gavin went first. He used the rope to lower himself down and put some weight on the log. He balanced and tip toed to the next log and slowly made his way across. Then it was my turn. I lowered onto the log, got my footing, proudly announced, “Oh! This ain’t no thang!” then promptly slipped off the log and sunk up to my knees in mud. It was absolutely hilarious! I needed to be yanked out of there and when I did, my sandals were rendered useless. I was slip sliding around so much in them I had to take them off and do the rest of the hike barefooted.
As the slot canyon narrows, you can look up and see a car from what appears to be the early 1900’s smashed in the crack of the canyon. Not sure anyone has the whole story on the car but it was neat to see! Hopefully whoever landed it there got out alive! This was our turning around point and my feet were glad. I put my slimy sandals back on and was looking forward to finding a hose to rinse off.
The hike was such a fun adventure and the company was really nice to have. I think we’ll all be laughing at my famous last words for quite some time. I spent a little while longer in Bryce Canyon after my friends left but eventually I knew I had to leave. There was a lot more of Utah I wanted to see so I started thinking about pulling up stakes and finding a new place to call home. In preparation of my departure, I was giving Mander a once over and something pooled on the back, driver’s side tire caught my eye. Hoping and praying it was just a weird collection of water, I crawled under Mander to investigate. My hopes were dashed when I realized it was brake fluid.
This, my friends, was a big problem. What to do….what to do….I thought to myself, “Well, I do like Bryce Canyon a whole lot. I wonder how long I can live here before someone notices and kicks me out?” Avoidance fixes brake fluid leaks, right?
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Great Pictures, enjoying your travel and lifestyle. Wish I had done this when I turned 50, too chicken I guess.. Have fun 😉
It’s never too late! 😘
Wow, some of those rock formations are stunning. Thanks.
Thanks for reading!
Nice place to visit. A pair of hiking shoes/boots, dry socks (plus extra dry pairs) and a pair of climbing gloves will make the journey more enjoyable and safer next time. Safe travels!
I have hiking boots and I was glad I didn’t wear them! They would have been so much harder to clean. 😜 No regrets.
A great adventure, on the edge of my seat about the brakes tho… keep us posted!
Will do! Working on the next post now. 😊
Looking great. I love to read all about your adventures. That canyon looks scary. Wonder how that car got that high up anyway? Do any of the places you go to have written logs or places to write comments or leave lil tokens. I guess like geo caching, but not hidden. Keep it up. Did you ever get to a place for brake fluid? Elizabeth in NC 1-29-19
We hiked down into the canyon. The car came from up top where the road is. Stay tuned to find out about the brakes! 😉
Hoping you got your brakes fixed.
I bet some kids rolled it into there on purpose, for hijinks, way back when. At least I hope so, because looks like nobody would have survived it!
Night time photography came out great. Picture perfect postcard!
Thank you so much!
A slight leak of brake fluid from a rear wheel should be ok to drive carefully to a workshop if the fluid is kept topped up. If the leak is worse you could clamp the flexible tube to that wheel, that would stop further fluid leaking out, and leave the other three brakes OK. Once again, OK for a careful drive to a workshop.
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I admire your spirit to tackle a big project that is outside your area of expertise, and then, complete it! An RV is a complicated group of systems subject to temp extremes and vibration as well as the dynamics of travel; so much to stay on top of with regular use. IMO you made a lot of really good decisions in your renovation, balancing all of the competing parameters. To boondock and be self-reliant to the level you are is impressive, especially when you don’t have big finances to buy your way out of a difficult situations. Kudos to you on many levels! I’ll watch for Mander during my SW travels.