Capitol Reef National Park

Frying Pan Trail

This is a delightful, fairly strenuous day-hike to the top of the Waterpocket Fold, with outstanding views in all directions.

The Frying Pan Trail takes in portions of both the Cohab Canyon and Cassidy Arch Trails. This description will assume you are starting from Grand Wash Trailhead.

When you come to the signed junction, approximately 1 mile into the Cassidy Arch Trail, continue forward on the Frying Pan Trail. You will be walking up a gentle slope to the crest of the Waterpocket Fold, among soaring Navajo Domes and a beautiful pinyon-pine ecosystem. Be sure to stay on the trail due to the abundance of cryptobiotic crust in this area.

At about the 1 3/4 mile mark, you will find yourself looking down on a canyon that is just south of Cohab Canyon. Continue down the trail, across the dry wash, and up and over the ridge between this canyon and Cohab. Once you reach the signed junction in Cohab Canyon, you can head for the Cohab Canyon trailhead.

Trailhead: Begin at either the Cohab Canyon Trailhead or at the end of the Grand Wash spur road off of the Scenic Drive.

Distance: 3 miles one way, 6 miles total round-trip.

Note: If you are hiking in the summer, take water with you and wear a hat. And, never enter Grand Wash if the weather is threatening. Flash floods can, and do, occur and can leave you stranded in the canyon. In addition, you can also shuttle a vehicle or mountain bike at either end of the trail, saving you the 3-mile return trip to your beginning trailhead.

Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 27 May 2011
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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