Cassidy Trail hike in Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
Cassidy Trail hike in Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah

Cassidy Trail hike

Bryce Canyon National Park
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Cassidy trail hike in Bryce Canyon under the early morning lightStunning red sand on Cassidy trail hike in Bryce CanyonNarrow singletrack trail on Cassidy trail hike in Bryce Canyon National ParkCassidy trail hike in Bryce Canyon National Park surrounded by white cliffsSmall impressive white desert on Cassidy trail hike in Bryce Canyon National ParkMexican hat peak on Cassidy trail hike in Bryce Canyon National ParkViews from the rim on Cassidy trail hike in Bryce CanyonStream at the end of the Cassidy Trail on Cassidy trail hike in Bryce Canyon National ParkStream on Cassidy trail hike in Bryce CanyonLone tree in the white desert on Cassidy trail hike in Bryce Canyon

Cassidy Trail hike

Distance: 17.6mi
Elevation: 1,552ft
Time: 6.5-9h

Difficulty Rating:

User Ratings:
9.5 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty

Located in the "Little Bryce Canyon", otherwise known as Red Canyon, the Cassidy Trail is an overwhelmingly beautiful hike. Slowly gaining then traversing along an exposed ridge, the route has nearly continuous views for its entire duration towards Mexican Hat Peak.

Cassidy Trail hike Map

Getting there

From the town of Bryce, head north towards the junction with Highway 12. Turn left and hop onto Highway 12, soon entering the Dixie National Forest. Shortly before the Red Canyon Visitor Centre, pull off for the Red Canyon Trailhead on your right. This turnoff is shortly after you pass through two famous arches. The turnoff is poorly signed, so watch out and be ready to hit the brakes!

I’ve done this 49 people have done this
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About

When to do

Spring, early summer and fall, avoid summer heat and winter snow

Backcountry Campsites

Yes, ask at Red Canyon Visitors Centre

Toilets

At trailhead, and two along trail

Family friendly

No

Route Signage

Average

Crowd Levels

Low

Route Type

Out and back


Cassidy Trail
Elevation Graph


Route Description for Cassidy Trail

The trail begins at the far end of the large parking lot, initially running beside a wash (dried out riverbed), which slowly gains elevation. After a 1.0mi or so you will reach the turnoff for the Rich Trail. You will cross this trail several times, however at each intersection the way is well marked. Follow signs for the Cassidy Trail and continue straight.

The route will now switchback a few times. Looking back you will be able to see the impressive red rock formations over the main Red Canyon, interspersed with small ponderosa pines. After passing another intersection with the Rich Trail and continuing along a short climb veering left you will come to the stunning Brayton Point. From this view the valley drops out beneath you, and the incredible red limestone lining the cliff wraps around almost 360 degrees!

The path then continues to the right along the ridgeline. Since this trail is shared with mountain bikes, the path winds around trees, though all in all it’s quite nice. The views continue as you descend from this plateau and veer north. Coming up at the 5.0mi mark, you’ll approach the Losee Canyon, where you’ll find a horse corral and a washroom. This canyon, though without a majestic view, is deeply entrenched in the stunning red rock and has a beautiful atmosphere.

The trail continues north past Losee Canyon, undulating up and down but never getting too steep. Soon you will enter the startlingly white ‘Little Desert’ section. Traversing this short phase of bright white rock with scattered short trees is sure to amaze you!

After this break from reality you will have another short climb to another ridge. After travelling this ridge for a ways you will reach the second washroom and viewpoint, signposted as a left turnoff from the main trail. After enjoying the scenery and the facilities return to the trail and head north.

Soon, Mexican Hat Peak will come into view. This startling rock formation juts out of the ridgeline like a shark fin or a pop can. The trail doesn’t go awfully close to the formation, however you are granted stunning views up to its craggy peak. Finally the trail will descend slightly to meet the wet and lush Castro Canyon. From here return the way you came.

Insider Hints

  • If you wish to shorten this hike, only do the 2.5mi out to Brayton Point. Here you will find the best views, and not too much elevation gain! This hike would be rated a 2/5. Another option is to go to Losee Canyon and back, which is 5.0mi one way, a 3/5 hike.

  • The Red Canyon area gets way less traffic than Bryce Canyon. Come here to escape the crowds and seek solitude in nature.

Comments

Tiffany Swift 1 year ago

Taking the Ledges spur is a must...fantastic valley & range views with a helpful breeze during the warmer weather. Beautiful landscape, good for panoramic views.

9.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Stevie M 1 year ago

Short and pretty easy with a few climbs when I did the Brayton Point. Beautiful scenery all around.

10.0 Overall Rating
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Physical Difficulty
TwoBoots 1 year ago

The hike to the top offers an amazing vantage point.

9.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Anabelle Clyde 1 year ago

Good for panoramic views. wonderful trail! well marked.

9.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Frank M. 1 year ago

Beautiful landscape, good for panoramic views. great for short but slightly technical, you have to pay attention to the markers.

10.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Gregory F 2 years ago

Cassidy Trail is a tougher longer hike. But the terrain it opens up is amazing. Loved it.

9.0 Overall Rating
Technical Difficulty
Physical Difficulty
Jarvie P. 2 years ago

This hike consists of several loops and taking you in different directions with beautiful views. Easy and relaxing hike. Great hike away from crowds.

10.0 Overall Rating
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Physical Difficulty
applepanda 2 years ago

Nice challenging hike. Beautiful but strenuous at times with pretty steep inclines. Totally worth it.

10.0 Overall Rating
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Physical Difficulty
subterry 2 years ago

Fun out-and-back with good views of the Red Canyon the whole way

10.0 Overall Rating
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Isaiah L. 2 years ago

Great workout. It was hard and quite challenging. This place offers great views and interesting wildlife.

10.0 Overall Rating
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Physical Difficulty
16 Comments Show all

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