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Capitol Reef National Park

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J F M A M J J A S O N D

114 mi 183 km of trail 8 Runs

Gems 8 Gems Easy Trails 12 Trails Intermediate Trails 28 Trails Hard Trails 3 Trails

Rising out of the arid desert of southern Utah, Capitol Reef National Park is sure to capture the imagination. Formed through millions of years of geologic processes, the park highlights spectacular sandstone formations, living cryptobiotic soils, and a textbook example of a massive monocline. The Waterpocket Fold is now home to specialized desert plant and animal species in addition to the desert landscapes that are protected within the park. Skyscraping spires, winding canyons, colorful cliffs, and massive domes and arches all make Capitol Reef a one of a kind destination.

To learn more about Capitol Reef, visit www.nps.gov.

Local Info

Visitor Center:
The Main Visitor Center is open 8 am to 4:30 pm daily, and is closed on some major holidays. Extended hours exist from the spring through the fall, and more information about seasonal operations can be found here.

Visiting Tips

Capitol Reef is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Even with Capitol Reef's arid climate, inclement weather sometimes causes road closures. For updated weather information, current closures, and up to date information on the park, visit the park's website.

Fees & Passes:
To learn more about park fees, click here.

Camping & Lodging

There is one developed campground and two primitive campgrounds maintained within the Capitol Reef National Park. It is not possible to make reservations for the Fruita Campground, so you'll want to come early as it usually fills by early to mid-afternoon in the spring and the fall. All camping areas in Capitol Reef fill on a first come, first served basis. While each campground is open year-round, it is best to check road reports, as road closures can make reaching a campground impossible.

  • Fruita Campground: Open year round. Potable water is available.
  • Cathedral Valley Campground: Open year round. No potable water available.
  • Cedar Mesa Campground: Open year round. No potable water available.

Backcountry camping is also available. A permit must be obtained from the visitor center during normal business hours. More information on camping in the park, can be found here.

Food & Drink

There are no restaurants or lodges that operate within the park. The Gifford House Store and Museum sells fresh baked goods such as cinnamon rolls, breads, and pies, in addition to ice cream, canned good, chips, and other novelties. Other packaged snacks are also available at the visitor center. There are many dining options available outside of the park. More information about dining in the nearby areas can be found here.

Other Activities

Capitol Reef National Park is located near excellent areas for a variety of outdoor activities. When not exploring the park on foot, there are ample opportunities for other non-motorized activities around the park, such as trail running, mountain biking, and rock climbing. There are also many areas where motorized activities such as dirt biking, rock crawling, and ATV riding are popular as well.

Maps & Guidebooks

A variety of guidebooks, pamphlets, and brochures are available at the parks website to help plan your trip.

Gems in Capitol Reef National Park - 8

Trail Run Project is built by runners like you. Add Your Gems

gem Favorite Hickman Bridge from underneath

Hickman Natural Bridge

(18) Loa, UT
gem Favorite Frolicking through Fruita's famous orchards beside the Fremont River Trail.

Fruita Orchards

(15) Loa, UT
gem Favorite Panorama Point, Capital Reef.

Mummy Cliff from Panorama Point

(6) Loa, UT
gem Favorite Cassidy Arch in front of the beautiful Grand Wash

Cassidy Arch

(9) Loa, UT
gem Favorite The view at the top.

Strike Valley Overlook

(5) Escalante, UT
gem Favorite You just can't beat Capitol Reef, named after the dome ("Capitol Dome"), which resembles the Capitol building.

Capitol Dome

(10) Loa, UT
gem Favorite No Photos

Halls Creek Narrows

(1) Escalante, UT
gem Favorite Believe it or not, this is a horse on the pioneer register.

Pioneer Register

(5) Loa, UT

Runs in Capitol Reef National Park - 8

Trail Run Project is built by runners like you. Add Your Runs

Favorite Cassidy Arch in front of the beautiful Grand Wash
Intermediate/Difficult

Cassidy Arch

3.2 mi 5.1 km • Out and Back • 734 ft Ascent 223.63 m Ascent

(27) Loa, UT
Favorite Waterpocket Fold from Navajo Nobs with Henry Mountains in the background
Intermediate/Difficult

Navajo Knobs Out and Back

9.2 mi 14.9 km • Out and Back • 1,892 ft Ascent 576.78 m Ascent

(11) Loa, UT
Favorite The view at the top.
Intermediate/Difficult

Strike Valley Overlook and Upper Muley Twist Canyon

15.8 mi 25.4 km • Loop • 1,344 ft Ascent 409.68 m Ascent

(6) Escalante, UT
Favorite Henry Mountains from the Burro Wash Route.
Difficult

Burro Wash

6.6 mi 10.7 km • Loop • 552 ft Ascent 168.33 m Ascent

(8) Loa, UT
Favorite Waterpocket Fold from the Post Cutoff Trail. with permission from walkaboutwest *No Commercial Use
Intermediate

Lower Muley Twist Canyon Loop

15.4 mi 24.9 km • Loop • 1,051 ft Ascent 320.29 m Ascent

(7) Escalante, UT
Favorite Believe it or not, this is a horse on the pioneer register.
Easy/Intermediate

Capitol Gorge Trail

4.7 mi 7.5 km • Out and Back • 222 ft Ascent 67.65 m Ascent

(11) Loa, UT
Favorite Cathedral Valley, Capitol Reef National Park
Intermediate

Cathedrals Trail

2.4 mi 3.9 km • Out and Back • 313 ft Ascent 95.31 m Ascent

(2) Loa, UT
Favorite Halls Creek Overlook.
Intermediate/Difficult

Halls Creek and Narrows Route (Grand Gulch)

23.7 mi 38.2 km • Loop • 2,455 ft Ascent 748.3 m Ascent

(3) Escalante, UT

Trails in Capitol Reef National Park - 35

Trail Run Project is built by runners like you. Add Your Trails

1.0 mi 1.6 km #1Hickman Bridge
Intermediate
Loa, UT
Intermediate
1.0 mi 1.6 km Loa, UT 27 
0.5 mi 0.7 km #2Strike Valley Overlook Trail
Intermediate
Loa, UT
Intermediate
0.5 mi 0.7 km Loa, UT
1.9 mi 3.1 km #3Rim Overlook Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Loa, UT
Intermediate/Difficult
1.9 mi 3.1 km Loa, UT
5.8 mi 9.3 km #4Sulphur Creek
Intermediate/Difficult
Loa, UT
Intermediate/Difficult
5.8 mi 9.3 km Loa, UT
2.8 mi 4.5 km #5Frying Pan Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Loa, UT
Intermediate/Difficult
2.8 mi 4.5 km Loa, UT 11 
1.4 mi 2.2 km #6Cassidy Arch Trail
Difficult
Loa, UT
Difficult
1.4 mi 2.2 km Loa, UT
1.4 mi 2.2 km #7Fremont River Trail
Intermediate
Loa, UT
Intermediate
1.4 mi 2.2 km Loa, UT
8.0 mi 12.9 km #8Upper Muley Twist Canyon Trail
Difficult
Escalante, UT
Difficult
8.0 mi 12.9 km Escalante, UT
3.1 mi 4.9 km #9Chimney Rock Trail
Intermediate
Loa, UT
Intermediate
3.1 mi 4.9 km Loa, UT 12 
2.4 mi 3.8 km #10Grand Wash Trail
Easy/Intermediate
Loa, UT
Easy/Intermediate
2.4 mi 3.8 km Loa, UT 17 
1.6 mi 2.5 km #11Cohab Canyon Trail
Intermediate
Loa, UT
Intermediate
1.6 mi 2.5 km Loa, UT 10 
3.4 mi 5.4 km #12Cottonwood Wash
Difficult
Loa, UT
Difficult
3.4 mi 5.4 km Loa, UT
1.6 mi 2.6 km #13Chimney Rock Canyon
Easy/Intermediate
Loa, UT
Easy/Intermediate
1.6 mi 2.6 km Loa, UT
7.3 mi 11.8 km #14Lower Spring Canyon
Intermediate
Loa, UT
Intermediate
7.3 mi 11.8 km Loa, UT
2.5 mi 4.1 km #15Upper Muley Twist Canyon Access Road
Easy
Loa, UT
Easy
2.5 mi 4.1 km Loa, UT
1.8 mi 3.0 km #16Golden Throne Trail
Difficult
Loa, UT
Difficult
1.8 mi 3.0 km Loa, UT
1.2 mi 1.9 km #17Surprise Canyon Trail
Intermediate/Difficult
Escalante, UT
Intermediate/Difficult
1.2 mi 1.9 km Escalante, UT
1.9 mi 3.0 km #18Post Cutoff Trail
Difficult
Escalante, UT
Difficult
1.9 mi 3.0 km Escalante, UT
12.8 mi 20.6 km #19Lower Muley Twist Canyon Trail
Intermediate
Escalante, UT
Intermediate
12.8 mi 20.6 km Escalante, UT
0.1 mi 0.2 km #20Upper Cathedral Valley Overlook
Intermediate
Loa, UT
Intermediate
0.1 mi 0.2 km Loa, UT

Photos of Capitol Reef National Park - 312

Trail Run Project is built by runners like you. Add Your Photos

I find the boulder wedged in here adds to the interest.
Jan 14, 2020 near Loa, UT
Burr Trail Road, Capitol Reef
Feb 19, 2016 near Escalante, UT
The view at the top.
Apr 19, 2016 near Loa, UT
Cassidy Arch in front of the beautiful Grand Wash
Nov 1, 2019 near Loa, UT
Blue sky above the Waterpocket Fold on an otherwise cloudy evening
Jul 17, 2018 near Loa, UT
The far right end of the overlook.
Apr 20, 2016 near Loa, UT
Panoramic view of the valley below and the Henry Mountains in the distance.
Apr 20, 2016 near Loa, UT
Capitol Reef National Park
Feb 19, 2016 near Loa, UT