It feels like pretty much all of southern Utah is (or should be) a National Park. So much of the landscape features unreal canyons, rock formations and undeveloped space, that Capitol Reef National Park often gets lost in the splendor.
Imagine a mile long wrinkle in the earth’s crust, that’s been pushed skyward and is now slowly eroding. Around the turn of the century, Mormon pioneers settled the river valley cutting through the center of it, and they took over the irrigated fields that were developed but then mysteriously abandoned by Native Americans.
The settlers planted orchards and crops, scraping out a living until the region eventually found notoriety as a National Park. Today rangers care for the orchards and visitors are allowed to U Pick fruit during their stay or buy fresh pies and cinnamon rolls at one of the former homesteads. The lush green settlement is called Fruita – aptly named and a terrific contrast to the red rock landscape throughout much of Utah.
So here are today’s five favorites from Capitol Reef. We will never overlook you again!