Looking at these canyons, and the mountains, I often wonder what the explorers and the settlers thought when they first saw this. I'm sure many people have that same thought. You're driving down the road and suddenly the earth opens up before you, revealing miles and miles of canyons and multi-colored rock formations. It is mind boggling. Especially for someone coming from the flat land called Illinois.
I've been to the Southwest before, but I never cease to be impressed, or amazed. Each time, the experience is different. And I always look forward to going back. It's never soon enough. A part of my heart is there.
A little about Bryce and this trail ...(from the National Park Service website)
By definition Bryce Canyon is not a real "canyon". Canyons are carved by flowing water. Most of the "canyons" of Bryce are carved by ice forming in cracks - a process known as frost wedging.
This canyon known originally as Water Canyon, might look like any ordinary Bryce Canyon kind of canyon. It's not. From 1890-1892 mormon pioneers labored with picks and shovels to carve an irrigation ditch from the East Fork of the Sevier River, through the Paunsaugunt Plateau, into this canyon. Every year since its completion in 1892 (except during the drought of 2002), this canal known as the Tropic Ditch has supplied the communities of Tropic and Cannonville with irrigation water. Even though the Tropic Ditch has been flowing for a century it has changed the geology. The higher elevations of this "canyon" have the lumpy, broken, and random texture typical of Bryce Canyon and its hoodoos. The lower section is without hoodoos, and has smooth angled sides looking like a 'V' in cross-section. Because of this little water course, it is unlikely that hoodoos will form here. The existing ones will eventually crumble and Water Canyon will have completed its metamorphosis into a "real canyon." The presence of water makes this canyon unique. A wide diversity of animals come here regularly to quench their thirst, particularly at night as animals tend to avoid busy trails - especially in daylight hours.
|Water in the desert...|
|On the Mossy Cave Trail - a short, easy walk with great views!|