Thursday, July 27, 2017

Rainbow Point, Rainbow Jr, Natural Bridge, UT

Hiked: 7/27/2017
Distance: 0.4 miles round trip cross country
Summit Elevation: 9115' (Rainbow Point), 9009' (Rainbow Jr)
Elevation Gain: 150'
Elevation Gain (in Empire State Buildings): 0.12
Round trip time: 20 minutes
Recommended water: 0 oz.
Parking/Fees: Free on Highway 63 Turnout
Difficulty: Easy

We drove to southern end of Bryce Canyon National Park and the end of Highway 63 to Rainbow Point. This is a great view spot to take in the entire canyon and get a good look below the rim. It is also the highest point in Bryce. Near Rainbow Point, a gentle ridge slopes up from the highway and ends in what looked like an even better view spot at Peak 9009, or as I called it, Rainbow Jr. This peak was not in peakbagger and not on my radar, but I had a "hold my beer" moment. Leisa was kind enough to allow me to stop at a turnout on the way back and walk to the summit of Peak 9009. The ascent was class 1, but there was a knife edged sliver about 1' wide to cross in order to reach the summit. The payoff was big, giving me much better views below the rim and a 360 view that Rainbow Point didn't have. I forgot to bring my 360 camera, missing a big opportunity. Oh, well. A few more miles up highway 63, we stopped at the Natural Bridge, which is really just an arch.

Rainbow Jr (Peak 9009) from Rainbow Point

Summit of Rainbow Jr

Looking back at Rainbow Point

The rim of Bryce Canyon

On Rainbow Jr


Natural Bridge

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