The Best Bike Trails: Bryce Canyon

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"Queen's Garden trail winding through Hoodoos in Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah" by Alaskan Dude

 

Red rock, scenic views, rich forests and meadows—it is easy to see why Bryce Canyon and its surrounding areas are a popular destination for cycling enthusiasts. The trail within the park itself takes you up the Paunsaugunt Plateau, providing an excellent view of the amphitheater’s colorful spires, pinnacles and monuments along the way. But the adventure does not stop here. While you are not allowed to bike outside the paved roads within the park, there are a lot of other nearby trails that you can explore outside of it.

Dave’s Hollow

This double-track trail is perfect for beginners. It provides an easy route from the Bryce Canyon National Park entrance all the way to Tropic Reservoir. The entire loop is 12 miles long and takes you through meadows and Ponderosa Pine forests along the Great Western trail.

Red Canyon

Here is another easy trail. It features a paved road that runs parallel Highway 12. The ride starts at the Red Canyon Visitor Center.

Casto Canyon

If you are looking for some red rock formations, then this is the place for you. It features both single- and double-track trails that pass by the Dixie National Forest’s awesome formations. The trails start and end along Highway 12.

Skunk and Badger

This one is for the more advanced cyclists. It features an 18-mile loop that passes Tropic Reservoir and overlooks Sunset Cliffs.

Thunder Mountain

Here’s another one for the more seasoned riders. The technical singe-track trail consists of steep ridges and tricky hoodoos, and, if that is not challenging enough, there are also loose rocks to worry about.

To make things a bit easier, some riders start at the top of the trail and travels downhill. If you choose this option, your trail will begin at the Coyote Trailhead located at the top of the mountain close to Red Canyon’s east entrance and end at the Thunder Mountain Trailhead right at the bottom of Red Canyon.

Now, if you prefer a slightly longer but still relatively easier ride, then you can simply do a loop. Begin at the bottom of Red Canyon and take the easy Red Canyon Trail all the way to the top of the mountain. Once you’re there, take the Fremont Trail to get to the Coyote Trailhead and make your way down.

Of course, if you don’t like the idea of taking shortcuts, then you can just go up and down the 15.8-mile 3,000-vertical-foot mountain trail and take pride in successfully conquering the most challenging bike trail in the Bryce Canyon area.

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