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Capitol Reef National Park is located in south-central Utah. It is 100 miles (160 km) long but fairly narrow. The park, established in 1971, preserves 378 mi² (979 km²) and is open all year, although May through September are the most popular months. Called "Wayne Wonderland" in the 1920s by local boosters Ephraim P. Pectol and Joseph S. Hickman, Capitol Reef National Park protects colorful canyons, ridges, buttes, and monoliths. About 75 miles (120 km) of the long up-thrust called the Waterpocket Fold, extending like a rugged spine from Thousand Lake Mountain southward to Lake Powell, is preserved within the park boundary. Capitol Reef is the name of an especially rugged and spectacular part of the Waterpocket Fold near the Fremont River. The area was named for a line of white domes and cliffs of Navajo Sandstone, each of which looks somewhat like the United States Capitol building, that run from the Fremont River to Pleasant Creek on the Waterpocket Fold. The local word reef referred to any rocky barrier to travel.

Finding the tanks brings a little bit of adventure to an otherwise very easy flat hike. There is also a small arch behind the largest tank of water. Fun to play around up there; walking through the gorge is really pretty as well. A good hike to end the day on, especially if you choose to do something a little more difficult first.

Great. I always enjoy the ledge walking though it never feels dangerous. As one who finds enjoyment in summitting, the end was a bit anti climactic.

Awesome challenging hike. I got on the trail around 11, did Hickman’s Bridge Koop and then took the turn in the Fork 4.2 miles to Navajo Knobs. Got back to the car just after 4. It was a beautiful sunny and chilly February day. No snow. Very exposed. Wouldn’t recommend in the summer.

The most popular trail in a not very busy park. Once you get to the part of the trail that loops, make sure to go right in a counter clockwise direction to get the most stunning approach

Great conditions today. The hike is challenging but the trail is well marked and the terrain diverse. Arriving at the arch is very rewarding.

walking
13 days ago

Really easy trail - the only dog friendly one at the park. I went here in February, the temperature was in the 40s, but was warm in the sun. Because it was off-season it wasn't crowded - in fact I was the only one there (on the trail).

The park is beautiful - worth seeing. I wish I had camped out there or got a cabin and did some more trails.

hiking
15 days ago

An unforgettable hike.

Amazing rock formations, highly recommended

hiking
22 days ago

Great hike to see a natural bridge in a beautiful National Park! It didn't take too long, but the first part to Hickman Bridge was all gain. After that part, the rest is fairly easy. Worth the heat if you go mid-day in late June!

Great little hike to a cool bridge arch. Got some great photos standing on the arch with the sunset in the background. From the trailhead, the first stretch is a steep incline with a rocky trail. The rest of the hike levels out and is pretty easy. Came here in the off season and we were the only ones on the trail which was pretty awesome. Took about 2 hours round trip with plenty of stops for photos.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful hike, had a great vantage point to watch the sunset from. We also had good views of some of the rock formations that inspired them to name the park after capitol buildings.

Cool views of the park! We did not go here at sunset, but still enjoyed looking from this viewpoint.

scenic driving
1 month ago

Great drive through Capitol Reef State Park, the Waterpocket Fold is really cool to see with the lines that go between red and white rock layers of golden sandstone, canyons and striking rock formations. Among the cool sights are the Chimney Rock pillar and 3 mile hike, the Hickman Bridge arch, and Capitol Reef, known for its white sandstone domes. Amazing to see Fruita as a real oasis in the desert along with its famous barn and old schoolhouse. Definitely worth a side trip.

backpacking
1 month ago

Why, oh WHY is noone talking about how dangerous this trail is? With a 30 pound pack on, I was legitimately scared and decided to turn back, for two reasons: (1) According to my GPS map, there is a large variance in distance and elevation between where the trail should be, and where I was, to the point where I thought the cairns were for a different trail, and (2) the sheer drops in the slickrock and cliffs, mixed with sometimes loose rocks that you're depending on for hand and foot holds, made for a very dangerous experience especially with a pack on. Location wise, I went clockwise at the split, and decided to turn around at pretty much the northern most point. I thought if the trail DID continue, I couldn't see how it would get past the cliffs to the east of me since they were SHEER cliffs, so at that point I decided to turn around. I'd recommend having a buddy to tether to, it's that nerve-wracking. To get my point across, I'm not a scardy-cat but I do have my limits (I've ridden my track-bike around Daytona International Raceway at 184mph, dragging a knee around corners, but I felt this trail was way more dangerous than that.

hiking
1 month ago

Steady incline and well marked with cairns. Great views along the way & educational too! We arrived early, around 9 on a Saturday, and beat the traffic. We took our time with healthy stops for pics & rest; made it back down, passing talkative groups and couples, to the then full parking lot at 1130.

walking
1 month ago

fun. not for children under 12, there a couple of places the trail skirts waterfalls which can be challenging without river shoes with a good grip.

Canyon area, really interesting hike worth trying

scenic driving
2 months ago

We drove through on the way from St. George to Moab. We wish we had more time to explore some of the many trails in the park. It's a beautiful drive. Keep in mind if you come out this way, there's not much in the way of gas stations, stores and restaurants... make sure you bring food, water and other things with you.

2 months ago

Worth the walk!

hiking
2 months ago

There are some great views from parts of the trail where you can say badlands formations, mesas, and canyons. However, the real gem is the Spring Canyon Trail that issues east from the chimney rock loop. Even if you just hike a mile into it, you'll be rewarded greatly. I plan to return to hike the whole thing.

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