Hiking the Navajo + Queen’s Garden Loop Trail in Bryce Canyon National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park, with parts of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in the background.

One of the most popular hikes in Bryce Canyon National Park, the Navajo and Queen’s Garden loop is famous for a reason! It is a 2.9 mile roundtrip hike, with 646 feet of elevation gain and features an easy trail rating, a gorgeous hike down to the canyon floor, and spectacular rock formations with scenic lookout points over the duration of the trail. This trail is best used from April through October, although some portions may be closed due to snow and ice even in April. Be sure to check for updates on social media, or check with the ranger station about potential trail closures.

This hike can be done in either direction, from Sunrise Point to Sunset Point, or Sunset Point to Sunrise Point. Each time I have done it, I’ve done it from Sunset Point to Sunrise Point! Sometimes, park rangers will request you do this trail in a specific direction; be sure you know before you go!

It also features some of the most photographed areas in Bryce Canyon, where photographers, enthusiasts, and tourists alike flock! One of the most photographed sections is illustrated below, just under sunset point, with it’s twisting, turning switchbacks descending to the canyon below.

Zigzagging down, down, down to the canyon floor!

Another major draw factor for this trail is Thor’s Hammer, seen right at the beginning of the trail if starting from Sunset Point. This single column, or hoodoo, is quite impressive and mimic’s the weapon of Thor – it’s actually quite entertaining! Behind this, the high desert sprawls out in the background, with parts of Grain Staircase-Escalante National Monument supplanting the view.

Thor’s Hammer standing alone and tall in front of an impressive backdrop.

To get you even more enticed, check out some photos from this beautiful hike right here!

The next Thor’s Hammer? Little Thor’s Hammer?
Yes, the sky seriously does get this blue. Southern Utah is quite amazing!
A horse trail leads deeper into Bryce Canyon.

Make sure that when you attempt any hike in Bryce Canyon National Park, and any hikes in Southern Utah at other National Parks or desert, that you come prepared! This hike is okay to do in strapped sandals with heel straps, such as chacos or tevas, or good soled shoes and hiking boots. Remember to pack water, even for a 2.9 mile trail, and wear sunscreen or long layers to avoid getting burned! Summertime temperatures at Bryce reach as high as 88 degrees Fahrenheit, but the air is dry: make sure to bring a water bottle!

Thanks for reading, and happy hiking!

Parting shot:

Can you find this hidden tunnel in Bryce Canyon National Park?

Next blog: More desert blogs? Or more dessert blogs? Travel season is coming up and I could not be more excited! I have lots of camping trips already in the works and I can’t wait to share them here!

7 thoughts on “Hiking the Navajo + Queen’s Garden Loop Trail in Bryce Canyon National Park

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