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GCNR, Bryce, Zion in late July

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GCNR, Bryce, Zion in late July

Hello! I'm looking for input planning our family vacation. We will be tent camping on the north rim for two nights - sat and sun. My question is what to do with the remaining two nights we have before we fly out of Las Vegas on wed evening. If we drive to Bryce on Mon morning, take the drive through the park with stops/short hikes, would we have enough time to see everything worth seeing and still make it to Springdale to sleep? We are planning on spending Tuesday and Tuesday night in Spring dale so we can spend as much time as possible at Zion - possible hiking the narrows. Our flight leaves Vegas in the evening - are there any must sees on our way? Thank you!

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Sedona, AZ
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for Sedona, Arizona, Monument Valley
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1. Re: GCNR, Bryce, Zion in late July

As long as you have your campground reservations reserved. If not, expect to be shut out when you arrive late in the day, especially at Springdale.

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Kipling. SK
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for Zion National Park
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2. Re: GCNR, Bryce, Zion in late July

In July the drive to Bryce from the North rim, and then from Bryce to Springdale is easily doable. Standard advice is to stay the night at Bryce, to enjoy the sunset and dark sky which is a fairly common feature of a visit at Bryce. Anyways, the drive NR to Bryce is 3.5 hrs. The Drive Bryce to Springdale is a bit under two hours.

In Bryce, the scenic drive up to Rainbow Point with stops at the pulloffs along the way back down can take one to two hours. Stopping at the viewpoints along the main amphitheatre will add another hour. The main viewpoints are Sunset and Sunrise Point, and Bryce and Inspiration Point. Taking a hike below the rim is much recommended to capture the different perspective being amongst the formations.The Queens Garden trail and the Navajo trail are the trails to look for. Taking a stroll below the rim will add about half an hour or more.

If you do not try and stay a night near Bryce, then arriving within Zion NP before dark is advisable. First off, the stretch of SR9 through the east part of the park is very scenic, wanting to be seen on the daylight. Second, the roadway is challenging, due to the curves, lack of shoulders, rock faces. Third, there are a lot of deer in the area of US89 and East of Zion`s East entrance. They become very active at dusk, and obviously harder to see as well. Also if you arrive in East Zion before dark, then you can hike the Canyon Overlook trail on SR 9, which is on the east side of the big tunnel, just when you see the ranger shack.

On wednesday morning and day, there are three spots you can visit, if you do not stay in Zion for a few more hours. Kolob Terrace road takes off from Virgin on SR9. It is a nice scenic drive through the high country in Zion, up to Lava Point. Kolob canyons is located on I-15. Though it is in the opposite direction than LV, it is a nice scenic area of North Zion worth an hour or two. Valley of Fire SP is located in NV. It is a desert environment park, and many people enjoy the detour off of the I-15. Not one of my personal favorites though, and I would spend all my available time at Zion. The drive Springdale to LV without detours is two hours, and there is a time change in your favour.

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Salt Lake City, Utah
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3. Re: GCNR, Bryce, Zion in late July

It is possible to do what you ask and my only concern would be as Widmarsh points out driving into Zions at night. SO if you do GC to Bryce to Zions in one day be sure to leave early as to have enough time to enjoy Bryce and still get to Springdale/Zions before dark. And as Redrox has pointed out do have a reservation for your nights stay.

So you have all of Tuesday for your Narrows hike. Wed morning I would spend in the main canyon again maybe hiking to Scout's lookout or beyond to Angel's Landing.

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The Narrows
The Narrows
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Zion National Park, UT
Angel's Landing
Angel's Landing
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4. Re: GCNR, Bryce, Zion in late July

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