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May 20, 2012

Bryce Canyon – Ring of Fire 2012

Posted with Windows Live Writer June 2, 2015!  Welcome back WLW, missed you.

While I am still undecided on a destination for the 2017 Solar Eclipse, I thought I’d share a few moments from the Star Party held in Bryce Canyon during the May 2012 Solar Eclipse.  The campsite was a nice pull-thru site, a short walk from the Visitor’s Center.
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Bryce hosts a Star Party every year allow the Astronomy Clubs to turn the Visitor's Center parking area into an array of telescopes.  These scopes are all privately owned by enthusiasts and freely shared with the public.
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The Solar Eclipse was the main attraction of the 4 days spent there.   But of course the sights of Bryce are always a great reason to visit.  The Above-the-Rim-Day consisted of a scooter ride to the Bristlecone Pine Grove and stopping at the view points on the return.
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The Below-the-Rim-Day was advertised in the newsletter as the ‘Best 3 Mile Hike’ combining the Navajo Loop, Queens Garden and Sunrise Point.  The Navajo Loop begins at Sunset Point.
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Arriving at the Queens Garden a longer loop can be made by hiking back to the rim on the Sunrise Point trail, instead of continuing or the Navajo Loop or returning to Sunset Point.
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The Sunrise Point trail begins easy enough, but as it ascends it lacks the shade enjoyed on the Navajo.
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Sunset Point was also the destination for observing the eclipse.  It’s 2 miles from the campsite along the Rim Trail to Sunset Point.  Although shuttles were available it’s a fairly easy walk with nice views.  But did not expect the gathering that was there to observe the Ring of Fire!

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Ring of Fire

An ATV was rented for a look at the back country outside the park.  IMG_2501 (640x480)IMG_2512 (640x480)

There’s even a nice bus/RV wash area to clean the dust off the RV before heading home.
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What are your plans for August 21 2017?  Visit the NASA site for the path across the US and pick your favorite spot.