Hiking Project Logo

Fairyland Loop

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.9 (103) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A less-crowded loop through beautiful hoodoo formations.


Your Rating:      Clear Rating
Your Difficulty:
Your Favorites: Add to Favorites · Your List
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

8.1

Miles

13.1

KM

Loop

8,139' 2,481 m

High

7,181' 2,189 m

Low

1,460' 445 m

Up

1,458' 444 m

Down

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

42%

Max Grade (23°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Views

Family Friendly Though kind of long and a bit steep at some points, if you have a hardy family, you should be able to complete this route without too much complaining.

Watch for snakes on the trail.

Overview

The Fairyland Loop begins at Fairyland Point, and takes you through spectacular hoodoos and scenery along the rim and into the canyon. Enjoy views of Tower Bridge and China Wall on this wondrous journey.

Need to Know

Be sure to carry plenty of water—1 quart (liter) for every 2-3 hours of hiking per person, as this hike typically takes 4-5 hours round trip over the 8 mile (12.9 km) length. Especially after rainfall or snowmelt, hiking boots or hiking shoes with good grip are a necessity—at that point, be aware of heavy mud that ruthlessly sticks to your shoes, more than doubling their weight. During one short section, the trail is bound on both sides by somewhat-steep cliffs. Though the trail isn't very narrow, those with more than a moderate fear of heights might be a bit scared.

Description

From the Fairyland Point parking area, dip down into the canyon heading northeast on the well-marked trail. As you descend steadily, the impressive Fairyland amphitheater of hoodoos is sandwiched in on your right between the trail and Boat Mesa. Watch for the Sinking Ship formation across the valley to the east.

After about 1.5 miles, the trail reaches its lowest point and begins a stiff climb up to a saddle and the cliffs below the Coliseum. From here the grades ease a bit until the Tower Bridge Side Trail turnoff - note that it's well worth the short detour to ogle Mother Nature's creativity.

Once back on the main Fairyland Loop Trail, begin the challenging climb up through parched Campbell Canyon, also crossing its namesake creek. The meandering trail ascends steadily through open terrain passing the Chinese Wall formation to the south. More vegetation and gnarled trees (look for evidence of lightning strikes) begin to appear closer to the rim. The Fairyland Loop Trail ends at a "T" junction with the Rim Trail about 0.3 miles north of Sunrise Point.

Once you reach Rim Trail, you've completed the hardest portion of this hike! Turn right and continue north, back to Fairyland Point. At this point, pass through some meadows and a sandy, beach-like area. Once you finally reach your destination, stop for a while and enjoy the views!

Flora & Fauna

Not many animals are found along the Fairyland section, but you might see some birds along the Rim Trail section. As for plants, you'll find the Bristlecone Pine, Ponderosa Pine, and maybe a Quaking Aspen beneath the rim.

Contacts

Shared By:

Tom Robson

Trail Ratings

  4.9 from 103 votes

#1

in Ampitheater

#32

Overall
  4.9 from 103 votes
5 Star
86%
4 Star
13%
3 Star
1%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#1

in Ampitheater

#4

in Utah

#32

Overall
43 Views Last Month
10,202 Since Apr 11, 2016
Intermediate/Difficult

1%
2%
58%
11%
28%
0%

Photos

Rim Trail somewhere in between Sunset and Sunrise Points.
Jan 6, 2016 near Panguitch, UT
Hoodoos on Fairyland Loop Trail
Oct 17, 2017 near Panguitch, UT
Boat Mesa from Rim Trail
Oct 17, 2017 near Panguitch, UT
Sinking Ship
Oct 17, 2017 near Panguitch, UT
Fairyland Canyon and Barney Top in the background.
Oct 17, 2017 near Panguitch, UT
Sunset Point, Bryce Canyon National Park.
Feb 3, 2016 near Panguitch, UT

0 Comments

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
All Clear 41 days ago See History
Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

Nov 21, 2022
Michael Calabrese
Absolutely unreal this time of year. Landscape is so diverse and breathtaking views
Oct 17, 2022
matt lazio
Oct 14, 2022
Sandy Oaks
hands down best hike in the park due to length, variety of rock and fewer number of dumb tourists trampling the desert vegetation
Oct 13, 2022
amanda marie
8.1mi — 11h 15m
Oct 8, 2022
Colleen Stubblefield
Aug 29, 2022
David Scott
Jun 18, 2022
elisa espdor
3rd time!! super windy when the elevation was higher made the decent kind of scary but was fine after — 3h 18m
Apr 15, 2022
Micah McLeod