Capitol ReefUtah 

Capitol Reef National Park

An impassable barrier running across Utah

Capitol Reef National Park protects the largest exposed monocline in North America, which is located in southcentral Utah.  The Waterpocket Fold is a 100 mile barrier running North and South through the park that is about 65 million years old and to this day is still rarely breached by roads.  The park received its name because the impassable ridges were referred to as “reefs” by early settlers.

History

Archaic hunters and gatherers migrated through the canyons thousands of years ago. The Fremont culture first evidenced about 500 CE, with food foraging groups and farmers of corn, beans, and squash, settling in the area. Petroglyphs remain today, etched into the walls. as well as painted pictographs. In the 1800s, explorers, Mormon pioneers, and others arrived, settling in the area and planting orchards of apples, pears, and peaches. The park was established in 1971.

Entrance fees

An entrance fee of $10 for motorcycles and $10 for private, noncommercial vehicles is charged at entry. The passes are good for seven days. The park offers an annual pass for $30 that is good for 12 months from the purchase date. The national park pass ($80), senior pass ($10) and other national park passes are accepted at Capitol Reef National Park.

Busiest Months

  • Percent of annual visits

Hiking and Backpacking Trails:

Capitol Reef has trails for hikers of every skill level.  There are 15 day hiking trails with trailheads in the Fruita area.  Backcountry hikers might consider the southern sections of the park, the Cathedral Valley area, or even Fruita.  Before setting off on a hike, remember that it can get hot in this area and water is limited.

Rock Climbing:

Recent Bird Sightings

Current Astronomy Chart

current night sky over Capitol Reef

Courtesy of the AstroViewer night sky map.

Weather:

Average Temperature (Monthly)

  • Average High Temperature (°F)
  • Average Low Temperature (°F)

Forecast:

Clear
Wednesday
Clear
High 40°/Low 24°
0%
Clear
Thursday
Clear
High 43°/Low 19°
0%
Partly Cloudy
Friday
Partly Cloudy
High 41°/Low 20°
0%
Clear
Saturday
Clear
High 42°/Low 22°
0%

Radar:

Camping:

Fruita Campground (71 sites) is the only developed campground in the national park.  Cathedral and Cedar Mesa Primitive Campgrounds are located in remote parts of the park and do not have water.  Backcountry camping in the park is allowed with a free permit, subject to regulations on the location.

Some Hotels and Other Lodging Options:

Torrey, located eight miles to the west of the visitor center on State Route 24, is the gateway to Capitol Reef.  Despite its small size (population ~ 200), it has privately operated hotels, cabins, bed and breakfasts, campgrounds and RV parks.

Vacation Packages:

Roundtrip Flights to Salt Lake City

Origin Departure date Return date Find Ticket

Denver

01/29/2019

02/05/2019

Tickets from $ 74

Las Vegas

02/04/2019

02/08/2019

Tickets from $ 133

Los Angeles

02/27/2019

03/04/2019

Tickets from $ 147

Portland

01/29/2019

07/25/2019

Tickets from $ 149

Spokane

03/14/2019

03/18/2019

Tickets from $ 176

San Diego

05/24/2019

05/28/2019

Tickets from $ 178

Ontario

09/24/2019

09/28/2019

Tickets from $ 183

Covington

05/01/2019

05/07/2019

Tickets from $ 189

Indianapolis

05/01/2019

05/07/2019

Tickets from $ 190

Long Beach

02/07/2019

02/11/2019

Tickets from $ 192

Oakland

06/14/2019

06/17/2019

Tickets from $ 193

San Antonio

04/18/2019

04/20/2019

Tickets from $ 193

San Francisco

03/09/2019

03/17/2019

Tickets from $ 196

Austin

06/19/2019

06/25/2019

Tickets from $ 208

Santa Ana

02/12/2019

02/13/2019

Tickets from $ 208

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