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I could have taken the longer, but easier route. But the sign said turn here for Capitol Reef National Park. OK, so here we go!

120 miles and 3 hours later, sure enough, I arrived, thanking God for His protection! Check the map, Utah-12 mid-state looks like an earthworm’s meanderings. If that weren’t bad enough, it reaches up to 10,000-feet of elevation on a two-lane road that didn’t sport any guardrails! To add even more excitement, the last 30 minutes were driven in darkness!

Unfortunately, I took no photos — my sweat-covered palms were too busy death-gripping the steering wheel! But hey, this summer’s travels were all about adventure, so kwitcherbellyachin’, right? Fair enough…I’ll stop whining.

I did some photography in the park the next morning though. Most would agree that Capitol Reef is the least striking of The Mighty Five Utah national parks, and is, not surprisingly, the least visited. It’s claim to fame is the Waterpocket Fold, a geologic monocline (a wrinkle on the earth) extending almost 100 miles.

I still found it well worth the time of a short visit. Besides, at the turn of the last century Butch Cassidy and his Wild Bunch gang are reputed to have enjoyed the area as a favorite hideout.

Undoubtedly Butch Cassidy found these narrow openings and high canyon walls great protection from any posse searching for him and his gang after robbing another bank or train.

Just a few photos from my brief visit:

These mule deer seemed more interested in Abby’s barking than running for shelter.

Awfully nice of them to pose for us!

Next stop: Moab, centrally located for visits to the last two of The Mighty Five parks. First, it was time to find a campsite. We looked and looked at quite a number of sites (finding them all full) but wound up with a site 23 miles up the Colorado River from town!

The site was beautiful, as you’ll see below, with one major problem: no cell service. It seems those huge canyon walls bordering the river blocked any and all signals. The mighty Colorado had carved yet another gorgeous canyon, but left me with no form of communication!

What scenery!

Here’s just a taste of the beauty — and good food — found in this area:

It’s a long drive into town,
but the scenery is outstanding!

As you would expect, the town of Moab offered great cell service, thankfully. In addition, Moab is the epitome of a “tourist town”. Rafting, canyoneering, ATV rentals, gift shops, restaurants, etc. are readily available.

Next, we’ll tour Arches and Canyonlands National Parks. Stay with us by “Following”!

6 comments on “What a Ride! 😳 Utah Hwy 12

  1. Jody turkopp says:

    Absolutely beautiful!! Live seeing the West thru your journey.
    John has always wanted to see Monument Valley.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Darlene Louise Anglin says:

      Holy moly Paul and Abby ! Everything looks SPECTACULAR !! Thank you for these beautiful, interesting shares !!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m running out of ways to describe the beauty of the scenery you are visiting, so instead I will offer this comment: that food looks AMAZING!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And I assure you…it was!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. monypapa says:

    You and Abby are having a wonderful trip that is for sure. Your pictures are amazing. Thanks for taking us along on your travels!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thx! We are having a great time!

      Like

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