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US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

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Michigan
posts: 133
reviews: 27
US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

I'll be driving thru Zion NP on day 1 of an 8 day trip. Planning to spend most of day 2 in Bryce Canyon NP. Day 3-6 will be spent in Moab Utah. My question, I realize many have said route 12 Thru Escalante and thru Capital Reef NP is really beautiful. But after most of the day in Bryce would I be better off just getting on the faster route of US 89 to I-70 to Moab? This trip will begin the last week of Dec..Thank you to anyone with a thought on this

Edited: 7:07 pm, July 23, 2013
Park City, Utah
Destination Expert
for Utah, Winter Sports
posts: 11,738
reviews: 232
1. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

For the hour you would save, you'll miss one of the most spectacular drives of your life. Take the extra hour and go via route 12. You won't regret it.

Salt Lake City, Utah
Destination Expert
for Utah
posts: 1,702
reviews: 18
2. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

Agreed. Scenic Byway 12 will take a little longer, but you won't be wasting that time. You would be wasting time going the other route, even though you will arrive faster. Practically the whole drive on highway 12 is eye candy. To me, it's a no brainer to take it. Just allow enough time to get back to I-70 while it's light. From there, the drive will be less than an hour.

The one thing you will want to keep an eye on is the weather. Highway 12 goes over Boulder Mountain with a pass over 10,000 feet. Snow could be an issue. But the same is true for the route you mentioned as well. Bryce Canyon's rim itself is between 8,000 and 9,000 feet.

Sedona, AZ
Destination Expert
for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
posts: 42,496
reviews: 144
3. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

We always use 2 days between Bryce and Moab because UT12 is just that beautiful. It is equally as much of a destination as Bryce or Moab. Don't skip this awesome drive.

Michigan
posts: 133
reviews: 27
4. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

Well I appreciate the comments. Looks like I better just take Utah Route 12..Maybe I better rent a 4WD SUV also just in case :)

Uden, The...
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
posts: 55,480
reviews: 42
5. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

Also prefer ut12 but the other route is very scenic as well. But not like 12. In december I'd also rent an awd car.

Atascadero...
Destination Expert
for Lake Powell
posts: 1,060
6. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

The road to Hana on Maui is more famous, and Highway 1 on the California coast has its fans, but if there's just one road in the world I would pick to spend a few hours on...

...It's Highway 12. It's that good. Glad you're going to see it...

Sedona, AZ
Destination Expert
for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
posts: 42,496
reviews: 144
7. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

I'm with you JFR. We've been blessed to drive them all. I put UT12 at the top.

Michigan
posts: 133
reviews: 27
8. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

Wow, Your strong opinions to not miss this drive has made this a no brainer! Even in late Dec I'm betting this is a very scenic route. Maybe a little snow on the red rocks will enhance it that much more. Thanks all for taking the time to help me make up my mind :)

Salt Lake City, Utah
Destination Expert
for Utah
posts: 13,866
reviews: 126
9. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

Well. I want to just mention that this being December the days will be shorter. And if you plan to "spend most of the day" at Bryce, then you won't have much sunlight left to drive to Moab . As much as I agree with the others about the beauty and scenic value of hwy 12 I would not want to be driving over Boulder mountain into Torrey in the dark. Nor will you get any value out of the scenic drive through Capitol Reef in the dark. After that it won't matter as much since the scenery is less beautiful from the road.

SO along with the weather you should consider your timing. It will take about 3 hrs to drive to Torrey. If you can't get there with an hour of daylight left then it really might be more to your advantage to come back another time for that drive and take the interstate route to Moab.

Uden, The...
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
posts: 55,480
reviews: 42
10. Re: US-12 from Bryce to Moab? Or ?

Actually it also will be a pity to drive I70 in the dark because this is one of the most scenic interstate stretches in the USA.

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