Utah

Roadside View of Capitol Reef National Park: One Day at This Utah Attraction

Roadside View of Capitol Reef National Park: One Day at This Utah Attraction

Do you know where Capital Reef National Park is? We found it by chance more than two decades ago and we’ve been going back since then.

Capital Reef is a small National Park located in southern Utah. It’s in the neighborhood of the Grand Escalante National Recreation Area, Zion National Park, and Bryce Canyon National Park. The closest town is called Torrey. Not much there except a small grocery store and a handful of restaurants, cafes and hotels.

The area has grown significantly over the years, but we think it’s still one of the best kept secrets in southern Utah.

Here’s a video we made from a recent trip through Capitol Reef. We hesitate to say that it was our destination, but rather, it was a diversion as we traveled from one place to another. Next time we’ll want to spend more time and explore some of the backcountry.

We spent just a single day ambling around Capitol Reef National Park in southern Utah. Here’s what we found by observing from the roadside.

We spent about six weeks in this area a few years ago when we were RVing full time and came away with a few stories. Here are a few:

Capitol Reef National Park – Our introductory piece from a couple of years ago when we visited this the Park.

Capitol Reef national Park – Image gallery – Some of our first images from Capitol Reef National Park. They’re still relevant since nothing has changed over the years.

Capitol Reef – Waterpocket Fold – We dive into the fascinating geology of the area around Capitol Reef called The Waterpocket Fold. By visiting Capitol Reef national Park, it’s no mystery that the area has been very geologically active and this article explains a little about how it all took place.

Capital Reef National Park – Wayne Wonderland – Here we dive into a bit of the recent history of Wayne County and who the first Mormon settlers were.

Goblin Valley – Utah’s Weirdest Rocks – This should have been listed first. If you visit Capitol Reef National Park and you come from I-70, you pass by Goblin Valley State Park near Hanksville. This place has the weirdest rocks we’ve seen anywhere and it’s worth a visit, especially if it’s on your way.

Posted by Donald Fink and Bonnie Fink in blog, Travel, US Parks, Video, 0 comments
Impressions of the Parks Near Moab

Impressions of the Parks Near Moab

If you like wide-open spaces—and who doesn’t these days—then one place that might be at the top of your list should be Moab, Utah. And we don’t mean the City of Moab—even though it’s a fine city—but the overwhelming number of national, state, and county parks in the immediate area.

To tell you about everything to see and do around Moab would take a sizable book. In fact, books are written pretty much everything you could think of to do in this American Southwest destination. From rock climbing to day hiking, mountain biking, four-wheeling, you name it, it’s here. There are tours if you want to be shown around, and there are rentals if you want to head out on your own. Many people bring their own equipment and head out to the backcountry.

Our quick little video here shows just a bit of only two parks in the Moab area: Arches National Park and Canyonlands. Both are easily accessible with any kind of vehicle and are an easy day trip from downtown Moab.

Canyonlands and Arches National Parks are two of our favorite places in the southwest. We’ve spent a great deal of time visiting these wonders over the years, and it seems as though it’s a new experience each time we come.

Subscribe

Posted by Donald Fink and Bonnie Fink in blog, The West, Travel, US Parks, 0 comments
Capitol Reef National Park

Capitol Reef National Park

One of the least known national parks in southeast Utah, in our opinion, is Capital Reef National Park. Located along Utah Highway 24, north of Bryce Canyon and the Escalante Grand Staircase National Monument, this park could be the best example of exposed geology anywhere on the Colorado Plateau, short of an exhausting trip into the interior of the Grand Canyon.

We just visited Capital Reef National Park for a couple of days along with side trips into the Dixie National Forest, the Escalante Grand Staircase National Monument, and Bryce Canyon National Park. There’ll be more on these parks later.

The easiest way to get to Capital Reef National Park is to head out I-70 in Utah, east from I-15 or west from Grand Junction, Colorado. Follow signs to Hanksville and turn right at Hanksville. You can’t miss it.

While we were here, we stayed at the Capital Reef Resort, which is a hotel just outside the park, near the town of Torrey. Capital Reef Resort is worth mentioning on its own. It features the usual rooms with great views, but also has Tee Pees in case you want to sleep in a tent, and even covered wagons if you’re more in a western mood. There’s a restaurant, which is important around these parts, and horse and llama stables for western riding and guided hikes into the wilderness.

Here are a few of the images we have from our brief stay at Capital Reef. These are from the park itself. We’ll post others from our trips up into the Dixie National  Forest, the Escalante Grand Staircase, and Bryce Canyon as soon as time permits.

We wrote about Capital Reef and the area once before on a more extended visit. You can see some of the articles we posted here:

 

Posted by Donald Fink and Bonnie Fink in blog, Travel, US Parks, 0 comments
Arches National Park

Arches National Park

We’ve apparently dodged the smoke in the west, or at least most of it for now. We arrived in Moab Utah a few days ago and discovered pristine blue skys with deep red rocks.

It’s an interesting story that the first time we went to Walt Disney World many years ago, we were amused with the ride Big Thunder Mountain. We were absolutely sure that Disney’s choice of color for the rocks on the ride, which is set in the American Southwest, must have taken a great deal of artistic interpretation. The rocks are so vivid and bright that we were sure nothing so red could exist for real in nature.

You can get to Arches National Park by heading south from I-70 to Moab in southeastern Utah. Moab is about 30 miles from I-70.

Then we came to Moab, with Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park, Deadhorse Point State Park, and more. Even the valley where Moab sits is surrounded by a deep red Entrada Sandstone.

We’re still working on our Arches photos, but we’ve put together a few that can be seen now. Have a look at some of our favorites here:

Posted by Donald Fink and Bonnie Fink in blog, Travel, US Parks, 0 comments
Capitol Reef National Park – Image Gallery

Capitol Reef National Park – Image Gallery

Capitol Reef National Park is one of the most interesting places in the southwest. The Waterpocket Fold opens up several hundred million years worth of geology in breathtaking sandstone layers. The wind sand, and rain have sculpted the landscape into a place worth seeing.

Posted by Donald Fink in Gallery, Travel, 0 comments
Goblin Valley – Utah’s Weirdest Rocks

Goblin Valley – Utah’s Weirdest Rocks

If you were blindfolded, taken to Goblin Valley and told that you had just walked through a Stargate and were now on the mysterious red planet Entrada Prime, it might just be believable. Goblin Valley State Park near Hanksville, Utah, is just that kind of place. Just a little imagination, and you can easily pretend that you’re not on Earth any longer. In fact, portions of the space comedy “Galaxy Quest” were filmed here because of the unusual shapes of the rocks. In the movie, some of the rocks were alive and attacked Tim Allen!

Continue reading →

Posted by Donald Fink and Bonnie Fink in Featured, State Parks, Travel, 0 comments
Mesa Arch

Mesa Arch

In the red rocks of Utah, almost everyone has seen the famous Delicate Arch of Arches National Park. While most people haven’t actually walked up to it in person, they’ve at least seen it on the Utah State license plates. The walk up to Delicate Arch is three miles round trip, and is a bit more than some people want to tackle.

There’s another arch that attracts a lot of attention too, and it’s just ½ mile round trip from the closest parking area. That’s Mesa Arch. Mesa Arch is located in the Island in the Sky District of Canyonlands National Park. It’s popularity probably comes from the extreme red glow it seems to emanate, and the close proximity for viewing when you arrive. You can almost reach out and touch it, but not quite. Continue reading →

Posted by Donald Fink in blog, State Parks, The West, Travel, 0 comments
Capitol Reef National Park – Wayne Wonderland

Capitol Reef National Park – Wayne Wonderland

Capitol Reef National Park may not be the best known national park in the US, but this little park is possibly one of the most interesting. It is in the middle of a geologic feature called “The Waterpocket Fold”, and possibly demonstrates one of the finest examples of geologic progression in the entire Colorado Plateau. While not the originally proposed name for this park, Capitol Reef got its name from the locals, who believed the large dome shaped white colored sandstone rocks in the area resembled the nation’s capitol building. They also referred to the Waterpocket fold as a Reef, indicating that it represented a natural barrier. It’s said that the two expressions combined, creating the name Capitol Reef. Continue reading →

Posted by Donald Fink and Bonnie Fink in Featured, The West, Travel, US Parks, 3 comments