Capitol Reef National Park

In my opinion, Captiol Reef National Park is Utah’s best kept secret.  This is the least visited park of the “Mighty Five” in Utah, but it’s truly a hidden gem.  My sister and I made the quick trip down to southern Utah while she was in town visiting me for the weekend.  The whole time we were exploring Capitol Reef, I kept thinking about how much it reminded me of Zion, except without the crowds, which was so lovely!

My sister and I left Salt Lake early and arrived to Capitol Reef mid-morning.  Our first stop after the Visitor’s Center was the Hickman Bridge Trailhead.  This is one of the better-known trails in Capitol Reef, so if any trail was going to be “busy,” it was this one.  Hickman Bridge is an easy, yet scenic trail that ends with a beautiful, natural arch.  Next, we hiked through the Grand Wash Narrows, and finished the day with 8-mile scenic drive.  On our way home we stopped at a cute little sandwich shop outside of the park for an early dinner.

FYI: one thing not to miss at Capitol Reef: the fruit pies.

Years ago, when Mormon pioneers arrived to Capitol Reef, they planted a plethora of apple, pear, and peach trees in what’s known now as Fruita Valley. You can buy fruit pies at the Gifford Homstead, which is located about a mile south of the Visitor’s Center. Hurry fast though, because these pies are so good that they WILL sell out if you don’t get there early enough!!

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