Why Capitol Reef Should Be Your Next Outdoor Destination

It's not a secret that Utah is home to some of the most beautiful natural landscapes in the United States. From the towering red rock formations of Arches National Park to the breathtaking views of Zion National Park, there is no shortage of stunning outdoor destinations in this state.

But one place that often gets overlooked is Capitol Reef National Park. Located in southern Utah, Capitol Reef is every outdoor lover's dream destination.  Here are just a few reasons why you should consider adding it to your list of must-visit places.

Capitol Reef National Park

The Scenery

Capitol Reef National Park is home to over 100 miles of stunning red rock canyons, towering sandstone cliffs, and vibrant desert landscapes. One of the most iconic features of the park is the Waterpocket Fold, a 100-mile-long wrinkle in the Earth's crust that creates a unique and dramatic landscape.

Hiking through Capitol Reef offers endless opportunities to take in the stunning scenery. From easy, family-friendly trails to more challenging hikes, there is something for everyone here. And with the park receiving far less visitors than other popular national parks in Utah, you can truly immerse yourself in the natural beauty without crowds or distractions.

Capitol Reef Wildlife

Abundant Wildlife

Not only is Capitol Reef home to stunning landscapes, but it's also a hotspot for wildlife. The park is home to over 200 species of birds, including golden eagles and peregrine falcons. And if you're lucky, you may even spot some bighorn sheep or mountain lions roaming the canyons.

One of the best ways to spot wildlife in Capitol Reef is by taking a scenic drive through the park. The 25-mile Scenic Drive offers breathtaking views and opportunities to see various animals along the way.

Capitol Reef's most iconic features

Unique Geology

As mentioned before, the Waterpocket Fold is one of Capitol Reef's most iconic features. But this fold isn't just a pretty sight, it also offers a unique insight into the Earth's geology. Scientists believe that this fold was created millions of years ago by tectonic plates shifting and folding, leaving behind layers upon layers of exposed rock.

In addition to the Waterpocket Fold, Capitol Reef is also home to various other geological formations such as natural bridges, arches, and domes. Exploring these formations not only offers stunning views but also a chance to learn about the Earth's history.

Hiking Trails - St. George - Saint

Endless Outdoor Activities

If you want to feed your adventure-seeking soul, Capitol Reef is the place to be. Hiking and wildlife spotting are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to outdoor activities in this national park.

You can also go horseback riding, camping, rock climbing, or even take a scenic flight over the park. And for those who enjoy stargazing, Capitol Reef offers some of the darkest night skies in the country, making it the perfect spot for some stargazing and astrophotography.

Just like other national parks in Utah, Capitol Reef also has a Junior Ranger program for kids to learn and engage with the park's natural resources.

These are just a few of the many reasons why Capitol Reef should be your next outdoor destination. It will not only offer stunning views and unique experiences but also a chance to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and reconnect with nature. So pack your bags, grab your hiking boots, and get ready for an unforgettable adventure at Capitol Reef National Park.