Capitol Reef National Park

Scenic Drive – Capitol Reef NP

Capitol Reef is a little known National Park in southern Utah on Utah’s scenic highway 12, just a pleasant drive northeast of Bryce Canyon.  The paved  scenic drive is only 8 miles long taking you through endless rock formations of red sandstone.  Even though the cliffs rise over 1,000′ above the road, after the first mile they all start to look alike.

The Castle

One of the most photogenic formations is The Castle, located very near the park’s Visitor Center.


One of many unnamed formations along the scenic drive that make you think you’ve been here before, sort of like the movie, “Ground Hog’s Day”.

Fruit Orchard

The Mormon settlement along the Fremont River that cuts its way through the base of the sandstone cliffs was something of interest, at least more interesting to me than the scenic drive.  This orchard still bears apples, pears, peaches, cherries and apricots.

Mormon School House

The school house (restored) is one of the few remaining structures of the Mormon settlement from the late 1800’s.

Capitol Reef Barn

I didn’t get the story on this barn, but it didn’t look old enough to be part of the original Mormon settlement.  I just liked the scene.

Hickman Bridge

The one-mile hike to the Hickman Bridge was the best part of Capitol Reef NP for me.  The natural bridge is 133′ long and 125′ high.  I was there at mid-day; it would probably be spectacular at dusk.

Thought for the Day:  Nine-tenths of the people were created so you would want to be with the other tenth.   Horace Walpole

3 thoughts on “Capitol Reef National Park

  1. The old barn was restored a couple of years ago, that’s why it looks so new. It’s still used for the horses so needed to be in good shape. They did try to use historic methods wherever possible and in a few years it will look old again.


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