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Day 16, Sunday, June 4, 2017:
Kanab, Utah -> Bryce Canyon, Utah

Morning came in Kanab, Utah. Sleep wasn't so good, the AC was one with an onboard thermostat and intermittent fan so it never quite drove the room down to a cool sleeping temperature. the fact that the room was warm on arrival ddn't help. On top of that some sort of attic fan rumbled in the "quiet periods". We worked it out with management.

Breakfast was a pleasant surprise. It was in a nice roomy basement function space and was good. We made good time getting out for the big day ahead.

Before leaving Kanab we visted the Little Hollywood Museum & Trading Post just down the street. The owner had acquired a handful of actual western movie sets and arranged them in something of a village setting. It was padded with other props and facades made for the presentation. Judging by the vintage of the film shown in the movie hut and general condition of the exhibits the owner's passion to grow this has waned. It continues to attract guests and you enter for free and exit through the gift shop.

Down on Route 89 we stopped to see the Moqui Cave. It was not open but we got pictures of the outside. Constructed within sandstone erosion it is a southern Utah landmark, is a natural history museum featuring Native American artifacts and a large collection of dinosaur tracks.

Bryce Canyon Nation Park was the destination Du Jour, it was a little past noon when we approached the park. We decided to play is safe and simple for lunch stopping at a Subway sandwich shop a mile or so away from the park.

After lunch we headed to the park and motel. Ruby's Best Western where we were staying seems to have a sweet deal with an enormous complex and pretty much an exclusive concession at the park entrance. We decided to check in since the park shuttle was based out of Ruby's and we were going to park. While checking in we learned about a dinner / Wild West dinner show they had nightly. We got tickets for that, dropped a few things in our room and met up with the shuttle bus.

The park shuttles are convenient; you can get around without fussing for a parking spot. For me it was also nice to let someone else do the driving. The shuttle does not go the full length of the park. It drives to Bryce point in a straight shot then stops at about 6 sites on the return run. It stops at Ruby's campground and motel sites outside of the park. It's a single bus route start to finish. The surprise was that we got on the bus and were whisked into the park right past the entrance gate. We paid good money for our park pass and wanted to show it! How many freeloaders just got in? For the Grand Canyon excursion we needed to provide our pass number or they were going to roll the admission into our booking cost. This was not the last time we found National Parks leaving money on the table.

Where Zion was a journey though a valley or canyon, Bryce is a rim trail above a huge canyon. The dominant features are the Hoodoos, spires of rock carved by erosion to form intricate forms all standing in the canyon. Gazing at them your imagination can fathom all sorts of representations, like looking at clouds or ink blots. From the rim trail the view is spectacular and if you walk 15 steps to the side you suddenly see different sights. The stone in layers of reddish and gray stone really liked the camera even in the midafternoon light. We waked one rim trail from a bus stop to the next then hopped off to visit the other sights. Some of the sites had short trails to get to splendid viewing points.

The bus got us back to Ruby's where we finished unpacking for the night and got ready for the dinner show. Surprise, the TV didn't work. One call to the front desk brought a couple of maintenance men out to move the credenza to plug it back in. Soon it was time to head to Ebenezer's Barn and Grill for the show. There's no real grill. It's a nice big show hall set-up to serve buffet meals. The band was the Bar-G Wranglers. Band members made the rounds greeting guests as they were seated. We were seated with folks from Ohio and Germany.

With everyone seated they did a warm up set. Then there was a nice buffet meal based on your ticket choice. They followed that with a nice set of western classics and off we went. Compared to finding dinner and eating "alone", it was nice to have it laid out and meet some other travelers. It all wrapped up and we were off to our room for the download and back-up ritual. Before calling it a night we decided that we'd be driving out to Rainbow Point to see the rest of Bryce in the morning.

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Created June 16, 2017