“A less crowded trail that still packs in plenty of spectacular hoodoos, vistas, and towering cliffs.”
— Megan W
The gated road to Fairyland Point
Overlook (before the park entrance fee station) is sometimes locked or closed for the winter. You can still reach this route from Sunrise Point by using the Rim Trail
Although this trail is officially called the Fairyland "Loop" Trail, it does not actually start and end at the same place unless you also include the approximately 2.5 miles of travel on the Rim Trail
between Fairyland Point
and Sunrise Point. Completing the circle using both trails ends up being about 8 miles.
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.
Flora & Fauna
Occasional rattlesnakes. Bristlecone pines.