Top 10 Causes of Injuries at Bryce Canyon
#10 Unsafe Driving
#9 Climbing / Sliding Down Cliffs
The rock at Bryce forms crumbly cliffs and steep gravely slopes. Hand and toe holds support nothing heavier than chipmunks. Climbing the rocks and sliding on the slopes is not only illegal but also dangerous.
#8 Feeding Wildlife
Fed animals become aggressive. Even small animals can inflict bites requiring stitches and worse yet transmit disease. Watch wildlife from a distance and discourage animals that approach you.
#7 Ignoring Extreme Weather
At Bryce, it is possible for the difference between the daily high and low to be as much as 50° F / 27° C!
#6 Rumble, Rumble....BOOM!
Lightning is a year-round danger –especially during summer storms! If you can hear thunder, lightning is within 10 miles (16 km) and you need to seek the shelter of a building or your vehicle immediately. Read more about lightning safety.
Drink 1 quart / liter every 1-2 hours. A well hydrated body is better able to regulate body temperature and is more resistant to heat exhaustion. Sunburns also lead to dehydration. Wear a hat, sunscreen, and sunglasses to protect from the sun overhead and reflected UV light. Hydration Stations to fill your water bottles are found in several locations in the park. Check for locations on the map in the park newspaper.
#4 Leaving the Trail
Stay on designated trails and away from cliff edges where footing can be tricky. Even on seemingly gentle slopes, it can be impossible to keep your footing. Bring your park map to avoid getting lost.
Park elevations reach 9115 ft (2778 m) subjecting you to 70% of the oxygen you might be used to. Bryce's trails start at the top which means all returns will be uphill. Turn back before you become tired. Know and respect your own physical limitations.
#2, & #1 Bad Choice of Footwear
Wear hiking boots with good ankle support and "lug" traction. Sport-sandals &"trainers" are not safe hiking footwear. In winter, traction devices are strongly recommended for all areas of the park. Wearing shoes or boots not designed for hiking is the number one cause of rescues and injuries that require hospital visits at Bryce Canyon National Park.
Last updated: January 1, 2021