What It’s Like Visiting Bryce Canyon National Park in January

Are you wondering what it’s like to visit Bryce Canyon National Park in January?

Visiting Bryce Canyon National Park should be at the top of your bucket list, but a trip in January will be extra special!

Use the tips below and our Bryce Canyon travel guide to help you decide if a January vacation is the right time for you to enjoy outdoor winter adventures at this park.

Bryce Canyon in January
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Bryce Canyon is a popular Utah National Park and it gets crowded during the peak seasons of spring, summer and fall.

You can’t beat visiting the park without the crowds and the offseason rates in January.

Yes there will probably be snow at Bryce Canyon in January, but that’s what makes it magical! The colorful hoodoos really pop against the white snow.

And exploring the park with snowshoes and skis is part of the unique experience of a winter vacation at Bryce Canyon!


Snow is the biggest drawback for a January trip to Bryce Canyon (and yes it’s also the top reason to go at that time!).

If you’re not a fan of exploring the outdoors in cold weather or snowy conditions, then you should probably skip visiting this park in January.

The main Bryce Canyon scenic drive could be closed due to weather and road conditions, which means you’ll only be able to see the amphitheater section of the park.

But the amphitheater is the most amazing part of the park, and you’ll be able to see, photograph and explore it more intimately than you would during the peak seasons.


Does the Shuttle Run in January?

The Bryce Canyon shuttle doesn’t run in the winter. The shuttle service runs mid April through mid October. Check the NPS website for specific service dates.

Weather at Bryce Canyon in January

When visiting Bryce Canyon in the winter you can expect it to be cold.

January usually brings the coolest temperatures of the year averaging between 36 degrees Fahrenheit and 11 degrees Fahrenheit.  

With the right winter clothing, you can enjoy all the winter activities at the park! 

Does it Snow at Bryce Canyon?

Due to the high elevation of the park, there will be snow at Bryce Canyon in January.

It’s the perfect place to enjoy snow activities like snowshoeing, sledding and cross-country skiing.

The park does a great job of plowing the roads as well as the parking lots near the viewpoints. 

Does Bryce Canyon Close in January?

Bryce Canyon is open all year round, even in the cold winter months. In January the visitor center is open each day from 8 am to 4:30 pm. 

Can you Drive Through Bryce Canyon in January?

In January, you’ll find two roads closed to vehicles: Fairyland Point and Paria View. They remain open for anyone who wants to hike, snowshow or cross-country ski in those areas.

Even though Bryce Canyon is open in January, you may find the main road closed beyond the amphitheater following a snowstorm. The park closes the road beyond mile marker 3 so snow plow crews can clear snow from the higher elevations along the southern scenie drive.

The road closure typically last a day or so, depending on the severity of the snowstorm.

They always play the first three miles of the main road first. This includes the Bryce Amphitheater area: Bryce Point, Inspiration Point, Sunset Point, and Sunrise Point.

Check the Conditions Page for road statuses.

Photography in January 

The big draw at this park are the Bryce Canyon views and photo spots. In January the snow-covered landscape is just breathtaking! We’ve put together a Bryce Canyon Photography Guide with tips and best times to take pictures at each viewpoint!

Be sure to download our camera gear checklist before arriving at the park to make sure you have everything you need. 

Bryce Canyon sunrise photography is best anywhere along the rim between Sunrise Point and Bryce Point. 

And since January will be cold, we like to use photographer gloves and keep rechargeable hand warmers in our coat pockets!

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The Bryce Canyon hikes in January are a unique adventure, but there are two trails that will be closed.

The Wall Street side of the Navajo Loop is closed, but the Two Bridges side of the Navajo Loop remains open. We love the Navajo Loop Queen’s Garden trail for down-and-back hiking to explore the canyon below the rim.

The Rim Trail between Inspiration and Bryce Points will also be closed in January.

When hiking in the winter at Bryce Canyon keep in mind:

Some great easy hikes include Sunset to Sunrise, Rim Trail, Bristlecone Loop, and Mossy Cove. 

With all trails keep in mind that snow is only cleared from sidewalks as well as the overlooks. The snow can become muddy and slippery so you want to be extremely careful while hiking. 

You may need traction devices on some trails. And some trails may close due to bad conditions. Check with the visitor’s center for the most current trail conditions. Traction devices can be rented in Bryce Canyon City.


In January, there will be fun ranger led programs running at Bryce Canyon:

  • Hoodoo Geology Talk
  • Rim Walk Showshoe Hike
  • Constellation Tours

Check the Visitor Center or online for updated information


One of the best ways to explore Bryce Canyon is cross country skiing. There are many routes and trails open in January. Bryce Canyon maintains miles of trails in the winter.

If you are coming from out of town you can rent ski equipment in Bryce Canyon City. 

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