Saturday, April 11, 2009

Utah's Scenic Highway 12 ~ frorm Bryce Canyon NP to Capitol Reef NP

Utah’s Scenic Byway 12 is a beautiful way to get form Bryce Canyon National Park to Capitol Reef National Park, and takes about 4 hours. The trick to this route is to make sure the passenger is proficient at taking pictures out the window as the car is moving ~ not an easy task, but remember, practice makes perfect!

The first part of the drive takes you through the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument The views through the towns of Tropic, Cannonville and Henrieville are wide and open, with the red, orange, peach and white colors of Bryce Canyon. Cannonville has a nice visitors center, where you can stop and get information about hiking, camping, and driving in the “Monument” (the shortened name for Grand Staircase-Escalate National Monument). There are also some displays that explain the history and the expected future of the Monument. East of Henrieville is a small turn-out where we stopped and saw prehistoric Indian ruins – these particular ones were used as grain storage.

Scenic Byway 12 continues to Escalante State Park, a popular destination for some campers that has petrified wood and dinosaur bones on display. We did not stop here, but continued, enjoying the views as we traveled through slickrock canyon, which was an amazing climb atop of a somewhat narrow (considering it’s a road) ridge with expansive views all around us. We enjoyed a picnic lunch overlooking the town of Boulder.

After enjoying our picnic lunch, we continued our drive which left The Monument and entered the Dixie National Forest. We were surprised as the road kept climbing and climbing, and soon we were in dense forest with lots of snow on the ground.

As we continued climbing, we found ourselves surrounded by beautiful Aspen trees -

With incredible views of the valley, with Capital Reef National Park in the foreground and the La Salle Mountains in the background.

1 comment:

Jerry and Suzy said...

Isn't Utah a wonderland!

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