Tropic Trail/Navajo Loop to Sunset Point
by Ryan A
We arrived at Stone Canyon Inn and checked in on September 8, 2019 for two nights. We booked a Bungalow and couldn't have been happier with the space and the view off of the front porch. The following morning we set off on our Tropic Trail hike just after sunrise. Inquire at the Stone Canyon check-in for a map of this hike. A gravel and hard packed dirt road (which we drove) takes you 2.5 miles to the East Entrance of Bryce Canyon. Here you will find a turnaround and can park off of the side of the road. A 1.8 mile gradual uphill hike thru the valley takes you to the trail connector for the Navajo Loop and Queens Garden Trails. We chose Navajo Loop and took Two Bridges up to Sunset Point. We got breakfast at Bryce Canyon Lodge, explored the Rim Trail a bit, then returned to Sunset Point. We descended to the valley on the Wall Street section of Navajo Loop. You will probably not see anyone until you get to the main Bryce Trail system. 5.2 mile round trip with approximately 1,000 feet of elevation gain to the rim. The Navajo Trail is wide with minimal exposure if you hug the high side. A few words of caution. The Tropic Trail cuts through a valley which is home to the Great Basin Rattlesnake. Keep your eyes and ears open along this trail. On our return to the East Entrance, a snake darted across the trail in front of us. My wife was leading, being faster at downhill hiking, and jumped ten feet in the air as it crossed in front of her! By her description, it was likely the Great Basin Rattlesnake. Finally, on Navajo Loop, just be mindful of other hikers moving at different speeds and setting up precarious photo shoots near the cliff edges. Let them know you are coming and cross by them on the "high side". This is an epic hike that is not very well known and that I highly recommend!
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