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Capitol Reef Scenic Drive, UT

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Guide 2 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List UT > Central
4.5 of 5 by 2
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Distance Round Trip 20 miles
Trailhead Elevation 5,418 feet
Interest Historic
Backpack No
Dogs not allowed
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
15  2017-10-08 AZWanderingBear
21  2016-07-05 Bradshaws
28  2016-06-21 cw50must
Author cw50must
author avatar Guides 11
Routes 2
Photos 3,132
Trips 244 map ( 1,237 miles )
Age 42 Male Gender
Location Mesa, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Oct, Apr, May, Mar
Sun  6:07am - 6:32pm
0 Alternative
Named place Nearby
See the park by car
by cw50must

The scenic drive through Capitol Reef National Park is the road that heads south from the Visitor's center off of highway 24. The first part of the road is called Camp Ground road and it hits up all the historic places in Fruita. A good stop here is the Gifford Homestead, they have fresh homemade pies and cookies for sale here. Once you pass the barn is the section known as the scenic drive. There are several turn offs to trail heads along this road, the first being Cohab Canyon.

There is a guide available to the Scenic drive, there are numbered stops along the way and the guide explains the geological features at each stop.

Grand Wash and Pioneer Registry are accessed off the Scenic Drive.

If you continue far enough, the road will turn to a dirt road. This is known as Pleasant creek road. It is marked as "high clearance" but the road here still looks maintained out to the old ranch. At this point you need to cross Pleasant creek. This is where 4x4 would be required going forward, the road from here on out is called South Draw road. If you continue on South Draw road you will leave the park and end up on Highway 12.

The paved part of the road is the official Scenic Drive route marked as 20 miles round trip. Continueing on the dirt road section will add additional miles.

Check out the Triplogs.

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2016-07-07 cw50must
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Most recent Triplog Reviews
    Capitol Reef Scenic Drive
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Crowded park today. Seems the Columbus Day weekend is the end of their season. Was going to hit all the stuff off the scenic drive and the highway as quick as I could and then head up to Cathedral Valley.

    Drove to the end of the Scenic drive, after depositing my $10, and worked back. The Petroglyph Narrows and the tanks were fun, and easy little scramble at the end. Love the rock art, native and settlers both. No idea how the really high and very clear list of 6 names from Sep 11 got up there on the south wall close to the trailhead.

    Hit Oyler Mine real quick and then hiked to Cassidy Arch, a bit of a huffer for the first section but lots of fun later. Cool arch!

    All the sites along the highway were quick stops except the petroglyphs (Archaic and Fremont intermixed) and Hickman Bridge. Found a small bear pecked out at the petroglyph site, loved him. My new screen saver. Hickman is a good little hike. Don't miss the two small pothole arches about half way up. They are geology in the making.
    Capitol Reef Scenic Drive
    rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5
    This is part of our Mighty Five trip 2016. We did 5 parks in 5 days in Utah.

    Day 3: Capitol Reef National park. While checking out the historic sites in and around Fruita, we had lunch at the nice little park there next to the nature center. We then drove out to the Gifford Homestead for some homemade cookies. there was quite the crowd there getting pies. After our snack we headed out on the Scenic drive. The first 10 miles are paved. I forgot to stop and get a guide, but its also available online if you want to pull it up on a mobile device while out there. We checked out some of the side roads to trail heads, but we were running at the end of the day so we didn't want to start any new trails. At the end of the road we took the "high Clearance" Pleasant Creek road out to the old ranch. There also appears to be some secret NPS builds out that way. ;) We crossed the creek to South Draw road. This is supposed to be where the $wd required section begins. We didn't go too far since again we were short on time, it appears to be pretty sandy in some spots.

    I will also mention this here as well. We stayed at the Capitol Reef resort this eveing. We booked a Teepee, that's right a Teepee. This was pretty cool. The Teepee itself is pretty nice, its got electricity and a TV and air conditioning. Everything your room would have, but its way cooler cause it's a Teepee. The part I liked best was in the evening sitting in the chairs outside the Teepee and watching the sunset over the red rocks. It was really cool.

    Video: ... _gKs

    Permit $$

    Capitol Reef National Park
    $$ per Vehicle, good for Seven Days - View Information

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To scenic drive
    driving in the park on Highway 24 you want to turn at the visitor's center. this road will turn into the Scenic Drive.
    page created by cw50must on Jul 07 2016 7:23 am
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