The Riggs Spring Loop Trail is a longer, very scenic trail starting at Rainbow Point in the southwestern corner of Bryce National Park. The trail takes hikers from the Rainbow Point parking area, down the south side of the plateau, beneath it, through Corral Hollow, to Riggs Spring, back up the plateau through Yovimpa Pass, and back to the parking lot.
Trail Head: 37.47611, -112.240565
Trail Type: Hiking
Length: 8.8 miles round trip
Though it offers stunning views of the famous Bryce hoodoos, the main attraction to this trail is the evergreen forest. Rugged fir and spruce live atop the plateau along with bristlecone pine, while the towering ponderosa pines dominate the valley floor below.
As a loop, hikers can go either direction, but the recommended route for a two-day hike, camping down in Corral Hollow, would be to head east from Rainbow Point, down the Promontory, into the canyon, and then west toward Riggs Spring and Yovimpa Point. With this strategy, hikers can rise early on the morning of the second day to catch stunning views of the brilliant sunrise reflected off of the pink rock of the rim.
Rainbow Point is located 17 miles south of the park visitors center, at the end of Highway 63.
The east side of the plateau turns into a fairly even slope, rather than the steep cliffs and tiers that give Rainbow and Yovimpa Points their incredible vistas. The loop trail splits with Under the Rim Trail at the promontory, Under the Rim heading northeast, and the loop trail turning south.
On the south side of Yovimpa Point and the overlook along the Bristlecone Loop Trail, deep within the valley below, Corral Hollow invites hikers to relax and make camp. The camping area is set within the shadows of the ponderosa forest, north of Blueberry Spring.
The second camping area along the trail is located at Riggs Spring, at the junction of the Lower Podunk Creek route. The camping area sits underneath the cliffs of the Rainbow Point plateau above.
At this point, hikers must ascend the plateau again, climbing more than 800 feet up to the Yovimpa Pass. The gain in elevation is not that strenuous, gradually spaced as it is over one and a half miles.
Click here for more information about Bryce Canyon and the surrounding area.