Capitol Reef National Park and Boulder, Utah

Capitol Reef is one of the least visited National Parks in the United States. Despite this, it and the surrounding area is a photographer's paradise, especially in the Fall when the Aspen, Cottonwoods, and Poplar are changing color. Aspen are found on Boulder Mountain which is about 15 miles south and a bit west of Capitol Reef on Highway 12. Highway 12 is often named as the most scenic highway in America and the drive over Boulder Mountain from Boulder Utah to Torrey is spectacular when the Aspen are changing. This usually occurs about the last week of September and can be short lived if there is an early snowfall or high wind. Cottonwoods and Poplar trees are found along Sulfur Creek and the Fremont River, and along the Dirty Devil river in Hanksville. The last week of October is a good time to catch them changing. Some of the areas to visit in the area include:

In Capitol Reef

Cathedral Valley

National Park Service Map

Below is the official Capitol Reef National Park map as a jpeg and in three geocoded formats, as a GeoTIFF, as a KMZ file, and in Oruxmaps format. The official park map as a PDF can be found here.

Capitol Reef National Park Service Map

USGS 24K Topo Maps

Capitol Reef and the surrounding area is covered by 27 topo maps. Due to the size of the park I've provided two distinct merge maps of the area, one for locations generally north of Highway 24, and one for locations south. I suggest you download both if you plan to hike in the park extensively. Here are the maps included in each.

Capitol Reef North Index Map

Topo maps covering  Capitol Reef north of Highway 24

Capitol Reef South Index Map

Topo maps covering  Capitol Reef south of Highway 24

The maps can be downloaded in a variety of formats by clicking or right clicking below:

Geo Tiff/Avenza KMZ Oruxmaps KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Bear Canyon KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Bitter Creek Divide KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Cathedral Mountain KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Cave Flat KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Deer Point KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Egypt KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Flat Top KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Fruita NW KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Fruita KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Horse Pasture Mesa KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Geyser Peak KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Golden Throne KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Lamp Stand KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Notom KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Pioneer Mesa KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Salvation Creek KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Sandy Creek Benches KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Scorpion Gulch KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Silver Falls Bench KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Solomons Temple KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Steele Butte KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Stevens Canyon North KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Stevens Mesa KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
The Post KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Torrey KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Twin Rocks KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Wagon Box Mesa KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Merged Capitol Reef maps north of Highway 24 NA NA KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Merged Capitol Reef maps south of Highway 24 NA NA KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared

Outside the Park

Boulder Town has a spectacular hoodoo called "Balancing Rock" about one mile west of town near Highway 12. The hoodoo can be seen from the highway, look north. It is best photographed near sunset. The hoodoo can only be shot from its south and west sides, there are cliffs to the north and east. Balancing Rock may be on private state owned land but no one was present when I hiked there. There is a no trespassing sign on the land west of the hoodoo near Highway 12. Conversely the Boulder Town topo map has a line marked "Boundary" just to the west of the hoodoo itself, whether this is the boundary of the state land is not clear. To get to Balancing Rock park as shown on the map below, cross the barbed wire fence wherever you can, and hike north about .35 miles to your destination.

Here is a map showing the track I took to the hoodoo:

To view the above map full screen just click the [ ] box in the upper right corner of the map.

Boulder Town Area Topo Mops

USGS 24K Topo Maps for the town of Boulder and vicinity can be downloaded in a variety of formats by clicking or right clicking below:

Geo Tiff/Avenza KMZ Oruxmaps KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Blind Lake KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Boulder Town KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Calf Creek KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Deer Creek Lake KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Grover KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
King Bench KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Lower Bowns Reservoir KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Steep Creek Bench KMZ Oruxmap KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared
Merged map of Boulder Area NA NA KMZ Decollared Oruxmap Decollared Avenza Decollared

 


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