I spent my second last day at Capitol Reef National Park before making the drive back to Salt Lake City to catch my flight to go home.
It was day 9. I used up all the energy that I had in the earlier days by doing what I love to do, climb. Alright, to clarify it was all rocks.
I stopped at the visitor center to grab a map of the park and bought all my usual souvenirs. The first thing I saw on the map was the scenic drive. It was perfect because I didn’t really want to walk a lot. Unfortunately the scenic drive was very short, so I was left to do one hike with the amount of time I still had.
That hike was to Cassidy Arch (might as well since Utah is full of arches).
I still don’t understand why the miles and elevation in the photo is different from the trail guide that the park provides. Perhaps they miscalculated it when they built the entrance sign? Who knows. But then again was it that hard or expensive to fix? It really could confuse tourists (mostly me) because they don’t know how many mile(s) they hiked.
The real reasons why I chose Cassidy Arch was because I was already on that side of the park AND because I saw “1.5 miles” and to me, fairly easy to hike. I was so wrong. The hike to Cassidy Arch was not even close to simple.
On average on flat land, it takes around 30 minutes to walk 1.5 miles. My hike took 3 hours round trip!!! Well, I did stop quite a lot to take pictures, but if I minus that, it still took 2 hours!!!
I agree that hiking on an ascend, changes the speed and pace, but I wouldn’t blame it on the ascend to make my hike almost 4 times slower.
It took me so long because I got lost not once, but too many times to be able to put a number to it. Let me explain…
The trail was not marked! Not my fault, really. Once in a while, I would see a trail hint that was created by rocks, but it ends shortly after and I was once again left with a decision on which path to take.
No matter how times I left the “beaten path”, I was still able to get back on track because of my climbing skills. As long as I can climb, I will always be able to make it back.
Oh, one more thing…
It was also hard because according to the trail guide, Cassidy Arch is considered strenuous.
If you want to get lost and climb lots of rocks, then hike with me next time because I’m a pro at getting lost.