There is so much to see and do in Capitol Reef National Park! If you have been reading our blog you have seen all the hikes we’ve done already. We took a day and drove into the Waterpocket Fold to see even more sights.
Originally we were going to do some of this loop on bikes but to give my back some more rest we drove. We drove out Notom which turns to dirt and then turned off onto the Burr Trail. The drive to Burr Trail is an adventure in itself with a ton of options to stop, get out, and wander around the scenic valley.
Burr Trail is named after John Atlantic Burr. John Burr grew up to be a cattle rancher in the rugged backcountry of Utah. Living in such a desolate area, he needed to develop a route to move his cattle between winter and summer ranges, as well as to market. This cattle trail through the rough, nearly impassible country around the Waterpocket Fold, Burr Canyon, and Muley Twist Canyon came to be known as the Burr Trail.
The dirt road enters a stunningly dramatic canyon via steep switchbacks up. The Navajo sandstone has been completely eroded away, leaving a huge notch in the Waterpocket Fold. This reminded me of our ride up to Muley Point in Valley of the Gods and White Rim in Moab. Luckily there isn’t much traffic on this road and we could stop whenever we wanted and admire the view.
After ogling the view we continued on to Muley Trust 4wd road for a VERY rough drive. Muley Twist Canyon was named because it is so narrow and twisty that it would twist a mule to get through it!I really don’t enjoy off-roading so we parked and hiked in and up to Strike Valley Overlook. Strike Valley Overlook was worth the effort. Even if you park back at the start of the Muley road, it is only 6ish mile roundtrip hike to the Overlook and I recommend it. We passed by three arches; Peek-a-boo Arch, Cheerios Double Arch and Trinity Double Arch. At the end of the road we hit the unofficial trail up to the overlook and headed up the rock. Wow. Stunning.
We weren’t done yet! We continued driving down the Burr Trail and stopped at Singing Canyon. The canyon is a short walk and worth it. The surrounding walls soar up to 80 feet into the sky — with just specs of blue remaining visible. Unlike other slot canyons in the area, you’ll won’t feel claustrophobic because there’s plenty of room, which could possibly add to the acoustics of the place. The walls are red, purple, and pink, and there’s even bright green foliage.