Cathedral Valley...It's About Time


Ready For More
Jul 23, 2013
For the many visits made to Capitol Reef National Park over the years, we'd yet to make a drive into Cathedral Valley. Having recently acquired a somewhat high clearance 4WD SUV in the form of a GMC Yukon XL for our family, we took the opportunity to spend a day driving the Cathedral Valley Loop as a family while on Spring Break.

Friday - April 6, 2018

We started up the Hartnett Road by fording through the Fremont River. Shortly thereafter, we pulled over to have a look at an old truck and its neighboring relics of uranium mining operations. The local cattle herd kept close by, no doubt for the water supply on site.

From there, it was onto and through the Bentonite Hills.

Then...a brief pull out to check out the view from the Lower South Desert Overlook and Jailhouse Rock out in the distance.

From the Lower South Desert Overlook, it was of course time to move on to Upper South Desert Overlook. Jess and the kids were content to stay in the car for this one, so I made a quick run up the quarter mile trail to capture a few pics.

With a few more minutes of driving, we pulled into the picnic site at the Upper Cathedral Valley Overlook. There, we afforded ourselves of the available table there and had some lunch before making the short down to the actual overlook. Beautiful, but oh so windy!

Moving further on down the road, we opted to continue past the Morrell Cabin. We also had no intentions of taking the time to make the short side drive out to Gypsum Sinkhole, but inadvertently taking the wrong side of a fork in the road led to that happening anyway.

Then it was back out to the Cathedral Valley Road proper and onto what we were all looking forward to the most. The iconic and much photographed Cathedrals themselves (Sun and Moon), plus Glass Mountain.

With what daylight there was left, we made the exit back out to the highway, closing the loop en route back to Torrey.

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