Our journey to this amazing park was part of our first cross-country RV trip. Bryce Canyon was our 8th stop after spending fourteen days away from home. Prior to arriving here, we had witnessed the awe of the Grand Canyon and the majesty of Zion National Park. However, we did not anticipate what we found at Bryce Canyon. Our one day at Bryce Canyon is one of the most memorable days of our Rv travels.
Bryce Canyon National Park is located in southwestern Utah. The major feature of the park is not a canyon at all, but a collection of giant natural amphitheaters. Bryce is distinctive due to its geological structures called hoodoos. The red, orange and white colors of the rocks provide amazing views. Bryce Canyon National Park is much smaller than nearby Zion National Park and can easily be visited in one day.
Ruby’s Inn RV Park & Campground Review
In order to spend one day at Bryce Canyon, we needed an RV park for two nights. One of the challenges we have is that we do not tow a car, and need transportation when set up.
In our opinion, Ruby’s Inn Rv Park and Campground is the best place for Rv camping when visiting Bryce Canyon National Park.
Located only 2 short miles from the National Park’s Visitor Center they are the closest RV park to Bryce Canyon.
Ruby’s Inn RV Park is a perfect base camp for exploring Bryce Canyon. They offer over 150 full hook-up sites, and tent sites. Their amenities include a seasonal shuttle to the National Park, a heated outdoor pool and hot tub, and laundry. They also have a small store on-site that offers groceries and camp supplies, RV parts, and firewood,
If you are traveling with kids one benefit is the size of the campground. Our site was in the back of the park and offered a great bike ride down to the pool. The area is large enough for the kids to get our ride bikes, run around, and expend some energy. In our experience, the park was very kid-friendly and gave them an opportunity to relax as well as us.
The staff was great to us during our stay, and our site was level and easy to pull through.
Overall we highly recommend Ruby’s Inn if you are visiting Utah’s great National Parks. There is no park closer to Bryce Canyon, and you will certainly enjoy the stay.
The National Park Shuttle from Ruby’s Inn RV Park
This shuttle ride from the campground was extremely beneficial to us without a vehicle other than the RV. We were able to keep our camp set up, and easily make the trip to the Park.
The fee for the shuttle is included with the entrance fees to the National Park. If you have a National Park pass the entrance fees, and the shuttle ride is free.
You can easily board the shuttle right in front of the Rv park.
We highly recommend using the shuttle bus as it stops at many of the viewpoints, and trailheads inside the park. You can easily get on, and off the shuttle throughout the day. We never waited more than 15 minutes for the next shuttle as we made our way through the park.
As the shuttle makes its way through the park it offers breathtaking views. The stops we highly recommend spending some time at include:
- Bryce Canyon Visitor Center
- Bryce Point
- Inspiration Point
- Sunset Point
The shuttle drivers were all entertaining and shared great information regarding the Park.
We highly recommend using the shuttle service if you are planning one day at Bryce Canyon.
What to Do With One Day at Bryce Canyon National Park
Bryce Canyon is one of the National Parks’ greatest treasures in our opinion. It is small enough to cover in one day and offers great activities for all ages. We visited with our two children, and there was certainly enough to keep all four of us entertained.
We will never forget the views offered, the amazing hoodoos, and one awesome Park Ranger.
Start at the Visitor Center
Anytime we visit a National Park location the best place to start is the Visitor Center.
At the Visitor Center, you can obtain hiking directions, weather forecasts, a current schedule of Park Ranger-guided programs, your Junior Ranger booklets, and learn about the park before you experience it. Here you will also find a small museum, and bookstore for all your souvenir needs.
Participate in the Junior Ranger Program
If you are visiting any of the National Park sites a great way to learn, and have fun is to participate in the Junior Ranger Program. You can learn more about this program on our Junior Ranger Program blog post. However, don’t think it is just for kids. They allow people of all ages to participate, and it is a great way to learn about the location.
For the Bryce Canyon program, you must complete two tasks.
- Gain information about the park by exploring the museum, attending a presentation or hike given by a Park Ranger, or watching the 20-minute park movie.
- You must also complete an activity booklet and age-appropriate activities.
Hike the Hoodoos Challenge
While at the visitor center looking for activities to do with the kids the Rangers told us about the Hike the Hoodoos challenge.
This activity is part hiking, and a part scavenger hunt. To complete it you need to hike at least 3 miles on the specially marked trails throughout the park and find the “Hike the Hoodoos” markers along the trails. There are nine different markers located on eight different trails throughout the park.
In order to receive the Hike the Hoodoos challenge reward, you have to return to the visitor center with rubbings from the markers, or photos of yourself with the marker to show you completed the hike.
We choose to hike the Queen’s Garden & Navajo Trailcombination trail. According to the National Park Service website, this is by far the most popular trail. The total distance for this hike is 3 miles.
This three-mile trail offers great views of the Queen’s Garden Trail and its awesome hoodoos along with narrower sections of tall red rock limestone walls and switchbacks along the Navajo Loop Trail.
Queens Garden & Navajo Loop trail combination was a perfect afternoon hike for us. This hike took us a little over an hour to complete and offered once-in-a-lifetime views of the great Bryce Canyon.
Participating in the Hike the Hoodoos challenge is a great way to enjoy an afternoon at Bryce Canyon National Park.
Our Unforgettable One day at Bryce Canyon | Ranger Todd | Mother Natures Fury
Our day at Bryce Canyon started sunny and warm. In order to complete the Jr Ranger program, we choose to attend a geological discussion of the park with a Park Ranger. This Ranger-led event took place at the Sunset Point overlook.
This presentation was given by Range Todd, and unfortunately, we did not get his last name. Range Todd was giving a great presentation on the geology relevant to the park, and the history of the hoodoos. Of course, the adults found this more interesting.
Suddenly in the middle of the presentation lightning struck one of the hoodoos and the air filled with thunder. Only a short moments later the sky got dark, and it began to hail. Todd advised us all to seek some cover, and took off himself!
We made our way back down the rim trail and found shelter at the Bryce Canyon Lodge Gift Shop with many other visitors. After about 20 minutes of thunder, and hail the blue skies returned, and we continued to go hiking!
Once we completed the hikes and the Jr Ranger activities we returned to the gift shop to have our books signed, and receive our badges. Who was behind the counter, and reviewed our books? Park Ranger Todd.
It is these types of memories, that are just sprung upon us, that make Rv travel so awesome. We discuss what we believe are the true benefits of Rv travel with kids on our Benefits of Rv Travel page.
This is one Junior Ranger program to surely never be forgotten!