Capitol Reef National Park
Silly me…I misspelled this earlier, (capital). Cathy’s coming photos will tell the visual tale. Capitol Reef is yet another natural phenomenon in Utah of amazing red rock formations, monolith sheer cliffs, astounding vistas and humbling canyons. The name comes from old time miners, some of whom had been sailors, who saw the shapes of ocean reefs in the rock forms of the canyon floors that were their passageways through this land. They also noted the white stone domes that occur here sitting high above the red rock zone. These looked like state capitol buildings to them.
We took a short hike of 2 miles yesterday into Capitol Gorge. At the trail start, there is an info board with a photo from the 20’s of vehicles driving on the (dry) canyon bottom explaining that then, this was the only road from the East to this part of Utah. The road is gated to traffic now. On our hike we found out that this was still open as of last year. We encountered fellow hikers who were from Germany, love this part of the world and had been here just a year ago, (they have been coming to Utah for a month each year since retiring a few years back). The man said how amazed he was as on prior trips; he drove the dirt and gravel road into this Gorge, as in days of old. As we walked on, we could plainly see the destructive path of a flash flood that had occurred once or multiple times since the German’s year ago visit. The road was totally gone, rutted deep, exposing large boulders. Totally impassable, even with a 4 wheel drive vehicle. It dawned on us we were witnessing the power that has carved the canyons of the world. I hope to talk with a park ranger to find out more about what happened.