Red Canyon in Utah

 

The Red Canyon is located just off the Scenic Byway 12, close to Bryce Canyon and the Zion National Park.  Sadly many people are in too much of a hurry to arrive at Bryce Canyon, to take in this wonderful place. The Canyon is part of the Dixie National forest, but it isn’t what you might expect of a national forest. Instead, as you enter Red Canyon you will be awestruck by the red soil, the red Canyon Hoodoos and the contrasting green pine trees. It is free to visit the Red Canyon and it is said that this area is the most photographed place in Utah; it is easy to see why!

Red Canyon

What is a Hoodoo ?

A hoodoo is a column of weathered rock, of which the Red Canyon has many spectacular red sandstone spires and formations. These hoodoos have been created during millions of years of freezing, thawing and refreezing.

How did the formations get here?

The Red Canyon is part of the Claron Formation which is the same formation that created Bryce Canyon. Sixty million years ago sedimentary deposits of limestone, sandstone, siltsone and other debris settled on what was once a lake. Uplifting, which was the process of freezing and thawing created the huge structures, weathering then eventually created the hoodoos we see today,

Why is the soil red?

The soil colour comes from iron and manganese present in the prehistoric sediment.

Red Canyon Visitor Centre

Visit the Red Canyon visitor centre to learn about the canyon, as well as to pick up free information about exciting trails you can do within the area. There are a variety of trails available for whatever your interest, be it hiking, biking, 4WD, AWD or horse riding. For the people who enjoy out door living, there is a campsite close by.

Red Canyon

On the day I visited Red Canyon, some bad weather came in. This provided this dramatic back drop of the black sky against the vibrant red of the spectacular sandstone spires and formations of the canyon.Red Canyon

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  • Tracy McConnachie Collins

    I really want to visit all these beautiful places! They look fantastic and would really enjoy a walk around them – the photographs are fabulous too! #followmefriday

  • philandgarth

    Would love to see some of the national parks in the USA. Red Canyon in Utah looks impressive! Will pin for a future visit 🙂

  • Lisa

    Love all your posts on Utah, it’s one of my favorite states for hiking. Time for another visit.

  • Two Nerds Travel

    I haven’t been to Utah beyond stopping in Salt Lake City as a kid, but I’d really love to explore the parks and places like this during a road trip someday. The red rocks and interesting formations are so pretty! Great photography!

  • I can’t remember if I ever visited here, though I know I’ve been to Bryce Canyon twice and it’s one of the most stunning places I’ve ever seen!! This one looks gorgeous too, and the dark clouds do make such a dramatic atmosphere!

  • Looks an interesting place to visit. Would love to do a road trip through the USA. #feetdotravel

  • I have not heard of this place but it looks like somewhere I would definitely love to visit! I agree with Anna – the dark clouds against the gorgeous red canyon does look very dramatic, I love it! Thank you for sharing, I have pinned for future reference. #feetdotravel

  • Travel Lexx

    Stunning landscape and looks like an incredible place to explore and hike! Have only been to Zion in Utah so this is another place to add to my list when I come back!

  • This looks incredible! I would love to spend time being outdoorsy in the red canyon! Hiking and 4WD would be awesome! The photo with the storm clouds is awesome, have you ever thought about entering a competition with it? I would totally go for it!

  • I love wandering around and spending my time gathering thoughts at places like this. Even though I’ve never read about this place I can see by the great pictures I would enjoy it.

  • Sarah Turner

    Beautiful! Americans are so lucky with all the incredible geography!!

  • 1AdventureTraveler

    Great information on Red Canyon Utah. I definitely saved this for later so I can visit. Great information and stunning photos. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • I think I drove straight past this place on I-15. It looks beautiful and I think you were lucky with the dark grey cloud, it made for great photography!

  • Beautiful! I hope I get to explore the canyons in Utah one day. I love your photos, particularly the one with the dramatic sky!

  • ThriftyTrails

    I heard of Zion National Park but not Red Canyon. I hope to find my way there as I’ve recently been hearing a lot of good things about parks in Utah. Great photos! Love the contrast of the dark sky and the red soil.