Just when I thought that we had seen it all....
We came to Capital Reef!!!
After two days in the cool pines of Singletree Campground, we moved down the
mountain to the lower elevations of Capital Reef National Park.
Capital Reef is another great natural masterpiece preserved thanks to
President Theodore Roosevelt.
I never realized prior to this trip just how instrumental he was in saving
so many of our greatest national treasures for future generations.
We all are indebted to his vision and foresight.
Before we headed down into the valley... a last photo of our site in Singletree...
The day dawned cool, clear, and peaceful.
The scent of the pines rode upon the gentle morning breeze.
In Singletree it was cooler and much more secluded...
Capital Reef is warmer and more crowded.
But once we were down in Capital Reef we would be close enough to enjoy,
and take advantage, of the changes in light that come with the beginning and
end of the day and appreciate the reef to its fullest.
Capital Reef is a 186 mile long - 3 mile wide - crease in the earths
crust called the Waterpocket Fold....
A fold that was created when the whole Colorado Plateau was being uplifted.
Since many of the original explorers who first mapped these lands were ex-seaman,
and since a reef is a blockage to navigation....and as this reef blocked westward exploration...
and many of the white domes at the top of these formations resembled the Capital...
the name Capital Reef was established.
When viewing these pictures you should remember a few important points....
The camera just cannot do it justice.
These formations are thousands of feet tall!
First we toured the park in the mid day..
Then we toured the park just prior to sunset..
The colors were just amazing...
The quiet was awe inspiring...
The pictures can't do it justice but let me just say that at sunset...
driving this road...
If there is really a hand of god....
It surely touched this place!
This one below is one of my favorites .
Standing there... in the quiet of the end of day...
Well... it's just hard to put in words.
Kate rode much of this ride standing with her head up thru the sunroof.
It was funny looking later thru the pictures I noticed that she took this picture of herself
while I was in the background taking the above picture (my favorite)
At the north end of the park is an area called the Fruita Historic District.
It is a section where the Fremont River flows thru the Waterpocket Fold.
It carved a canyon from West to East.
As I've said... in the West water is life.
The Fremont River provides the life.
In 1895 this green oasis in the desert was settled by Mormons and the Village of Fruita
was established. This village was active until 1947.
The Mormons utilized and improved upon the irrigation channels that were first
created by the departed native Americans who first lived here.
They planted fruit groves throughout the valley, and the campground
of the National Park is now located in this green setting.
In that setting Kate made a new friend...
do you think the Apple pie in her hand had something to do with it?
In season you can camp and pick Apples, Cherries, Peaches, and other varieties.
Many of the fruits are Heirloom varieties.
So... in addition to this mind blowing scenery, you have this green historic district
and all the history that goes along with it.
There are still well preserved remnants of the old village including homes, school,
blacksmith shop, etc.
Our Campsite in the Fruit groves
Our self-portrait of the day...
Sitting at our campsite enjoying the quiet.
I had no idea coming here just how amazed we would be about the beauty of this place.
As the light of the day changes the canyons and the rock take on different hues
and it seems like you are in a totally different place.
We need to come back to this place!
Our online map is now caught up as well.
If you go to the blog and click on where are we it is all up to date!
I need to post some additonal pictures at the map points but otherwise...