Friday – October 24, 2014
Capitol Reef National Park
Grand Wash Trail
The weather continues to be excellent here in southwestern Utah. Another sunny, warm day, with the temperature in the mid-seventies.
We hiked the Grand Wash Trial today. It is a 2.2-mile (one-way distance) trail through deep narrow canyons. To access the trail, the visitor must drive 1.3 miles on a somewhat rough gravel road to reach the trailhead.
Spectacular views of green mountaintop vistas, where bighorn sheep are said to roam, greeted us as we traversed a dry streambed through the winding floor of the canyon. The canyon walls rising perhaps a thousand feet above us were a colorful array of black, gray, and yellowish tints merged together. The effects of flash floods raging through the canyon over thousands of years had carved out deep pockets and shallow caves in the rock walls. Small shrubs had secured a home in cracks in the walls of the canyon as well as cracks in massive boulders that had dislodged and fallen to the floor of the canyon.
After completing the first leg of the 2.2-mile trail, we now return on the same trail to our starting point. We experience new scenic wonders that we had missed on the first leg. At about the three-mile mark, we had a picnic lunch on a low, level, rock ledge jutting out from the wall of the canyon. It was so peaceful, listening to the sound of a gentle wind blowing through the canyon and the calls from a couple of ravens soaring on the thermals high above the canyon.
The hike through the Grand Wash trail was one of our most enjoyable hikes in Capitol Reef National Park.
Tomorrow another adventure begins.