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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Capitol Reef National Park, Utah, United States

Oct 3, 2009 - Capital Reef National Park

Sept. 28 Yesterday we drove a very scenic drive to Torrey, UT which brings us to Capital Reef National Park. After talking to the RV Park hosts we decided to take a self guided auto tour to Cathedral Valley in the park. The drive is 55 miles and took us 9, yes that's NINE hours! Our average speed was 10mph the entire day. The brochure of the park says Capital Reef is the least crowded and yes we only saw 3 other cars. The Indian inhabitants called Capital Reef "The Land of the Sleeping Rainbow". Encompassing nearly a quarter-million acres,...

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Trip Journal


On the road again...

Sep 28, 2009 - Scenic drive HW 12 and Capitol Reef Park

The sky was really cloudy this morning so Tommy decided against the dawn photo expedition. For our day’s adventure, we drove east on Utah HW 12, a Scenic Highway. We could have come from Moab to Bryce Canyon by this road but I thought it would be better to take a longer, flatter route in the motorhome. Tommy agreed but still wanted to see HW 12, so off we went. We drove through more canyon and mountain country and got up pretty high – 9600 feet. We saw something really interesting along the way. Puebloan Native Americans had built granary...

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Sep 15, 2009 - Capital Reef National Park, UT

DATE: Sept 15, 2009 Day: 46 FROM: Arches NP, Moab, UT TO: Capital Reef NP, Fruita, UT MILES: 175 miles in 5 hrs = 35mph Got to within a mile of the campground when the sky opened up with wicked thunder and lightning… and then the hail came all at once. Got so bad had to pull over and let it pass – temp dropped a good 25 degrees in 5 minutes. Got to the campground and all they had was wind with some thunder! DATE: Sept 17, 2009 DAY: 48 Took a drive/walking tour of Capital Reef NP; the park was named because the gypsum domes prevalent in...

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May 8, 2009 - Utah! Capitol Reef Nat'l Park

Thousand Lakes RV Park, Torrey, UT We took the scenic route (Utah State Road 12) from Bryce Canyon to Capitol Reef Nat’l Park, and it definitely did not disappoint. The park itself is located in the Waterpocket Fold, a big wrinkle in the Earth formed 65-million years ago when some incredible combination of geologic forces caused the rock to buckle. The Navajo named it “The Land of the Sleeping Rainbow,” a perfect description for the layers of multi-colored rock. When we started down the Capitol Gorge Trail we noticed a number of signs...

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Apr 23, 2009 - Capitol Reef National Park

Thursday Capitol Reef is formed by a waterpocket fold in the earth, and presented an obstacle to the early pioneers who likened it to the barrier a reef presents in the ocean. Apparently one section looked like the Capitol Building in Washington, thus its name. The park is fairly narrow as is the reef, but runs a long way north and south. Five gorges cut through from east to west. The campground and visitor's center are in an oasis along the Fremont River called Fruita. Mormon pioneers homesteaded and farmed there, planting fruit and nut...

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Mar 24, 2009 - Capitol Reef National Park

We intended to stay near Capitol Reef but the day we travelled we found significant amounts of snow as we travelled towards the park so we stopped in Richfield close to the interstate. The next day dawned clear and sunny so we drove down to the Capitol Reef National Park. On the road to the park we saw Golden Eagles close to the road. They were stunning birds. Unfortunately they flew away before we could get a photograph. Entering the park the red cliffs loomed. Stopping at a number of the overlooks we got fantastic views of the red rock...

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Jan 2, 2009 - The Grand Tour

We're going skiing! Or are we? Upon seeing the weather forecast and finding that this would be the last mild day before the snow and bitter temperatures, we decided to take a drive along arguably the most beautiful highway in the world, Utah 12. We planned to go as far as Boulder, UT and come back having no real agenda. The idea was to stop along the highway at the multitude of scenic overlooks and just enjoy. Our first pullout had some really cool views of hoodoos and sheer cliffs and an opportunity, a little sign that said, "Mossy Cave...

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Oct 12, 2008 - Capitol Reef National Park

This is one of my all time favorite national parks. If asked, I couldn't really tell you why, the best answer I could give you is that it just feels "like home". We were really looking forward to doing some hiking and introducing our friends to the scenery that this park has to offer. Fortunately the weather cooperated, it was cool and windy but the snow that had been predicted did not materialize. We drove the scenic drive ( it had been closed on our last visit so being able to take it to the end was a real treat for us ), we hiked the...

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Sep 30, 2008 - Torrey, Utah - Capitol Reef National Park

September 30, 2008 The ride over the hogback, down the canyon and over the mountain today was great. We climbed our first 14% grade on Route 12 and used first gear for the first time – 30 MPH, 2500 engine rpm, 30 psi boost with 700 F exhaust temperature at 8000+ feet elevation. : ) We stopped often to take photos of the brilliant, yellow Aspen leaves. We learned from Ranger Ray that Aspen grow in clones or clumps from one root system. You can learn more about Aspen at these web sites: Link to Aspen Tree Information Site Link to Another...

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Sep 4, 2008 - Capitol Reef National Park

Today we departed Hill AFB, just north of Salt Lake City, and turned our bows south on Interstate 15. Driving the interstate is nice, smooth straight roads, lots of places to stop for gas or food, etc. So when we got south of Salt Lake City we exited the interstate onto state highways. Normally 2 lane winding roads, up and down, not many places to stop. Much better, great scenery... We took hwy 50 past Scipio Lake, then onto hwy 24 through the towns of Loa, and Torrey, and into Capitol Reef National Park, a 100 mile long wrinkle in the...

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Aug 14, 2008 - Needles Outlook, Newspaper Rock, Capitol Reef NP

August 13, 2008 – Needles Overlook and Newspaper Rock, Capitol Reef National Park Another day another rock. I can’t begin to tell you how beautiful this country out here is. Needles Overlook is a view from above into the Needles part of Canyonlands NP. It was about a 50 mile drive from our campground to the overlook but it was worth the trip. John and I went early in the morning and when we got to the overlook there was no one there. We value the quiet, there are so many places in these National Parks that are so crowded and so noisy with...

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Jun 17, 2008 - Capitol Reef NP

We've spent the past two days at Capitol Reef NP. What a beautiful place! The Mormons settled in the area called Fruita and there are still orchards in the park and some of the historic buildings. The Fremont River and Sulphur Creek flow through the area. We hiked the Grand Wash trail which was flat and easy hiking. Camped in the park campground for $5 per night with no hookups. It was a tight squeeze getting into the campground and the host actually helped us park. The deer were everywhere in the campground and you could hear the stream...

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