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Waterfall – Mossy Cave Trail – Bryce Canyon National Park
Image by Al_HikesAZ
This is a waterfall just off the Mossy Cave Trail in Bryce Canyon National Park.
The Mormon pioneers in Tropic dug a 15 mile ditch with primitive tools to bring the water across the plateau to Tropic. www.nps.gov/brca/historyculture/pioneerstory. htm
The Tropic Ditch near the Mossy Cave Trail in Bryce Canyon National Park has run for over a century. Mormon farmers diverted water from the East Fork of the Sevier River near Tropic Reservoir to irrigate fields around Tropic City. This pioneer labored feverishly with primitive tools for 15 miles over three years to construct the Tropic Ditch. Similar projects had resulted in failure. Yet, without this victory, pioneer settlements around Tropic would be impossible. Previously, water had both cursed and blessed the pioneers. Can you imagine the pioneers’ dismay when flash floods washed away their crops and buildings and forced them to abandon their hometown? Can you imagine making the difficult choice of either; starving to death in your hometown or moving elsewhere? How about taking your home apart – log by log and then putting the pieces back together again, so you could be closer to a reliable water source? One pioneer described the celebration of the life-giving Tropic Irrigation Ditch this way: "A country, they said had been born, and so they sang out praises and prophesied great things about the future…We danced all night till the broad daylight."
My friend’s son is 7 years old and participated in the National Park Junior Ranger Program. In addition to completing tasks in the workbook, the program required that the Junior Ranger attend at least one event. Van Lathen decided on this Mossy Cave hike. I actually enjoyed the event and learned several things from the Volunteer Ranger who led the event.