Winter is a great time to visit Bryce Canyon National Park: you can drive the roads, normally closed to all traffic except shuttle buses, and have the scenery all to yourself. Camping might be a little chilly, but the campground is open for those brave enough for snow camping (or lucky enough to have an RV). Roads can be icy and will close during storms, but you can still meander around. Trails can also be icy, but the year-round visitor center sells studded grips for your shoes, recommended for safety. A lot of the restaurants and hotels in the very tiny gateway town of Tropic will be closed for the season, but the planned resort community of Bryce (just outside the park entrance) is cozy and convenient.
Despite the extra effort visiting Bryce Canyon in the winter might entail, it’s well worth it to have the whole park, the red rock and the dramatic vistas, all to yourself. Visit the park’s website for more information, and definitely pop into the visitor center; the rangers are often bored this time of year and will happily chat you up about current hiking conditions and snowshoeing opportunities!
Below are my stark, dramatic, contrasting vision of this brilliant gem in Utah’s Canyon County:
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