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Cassidy Arch Hike

Capitol Reef National Park, Torrey, Utah
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1 Review
Ages: All Ages
Cost: Free

1 Review for Cassidy Arch Hike

March 15 2011
2 families found this helpful
"Cassidy Arch Hike - Give your kids a safety lecture before you attempt it"

The Capitol Reef National Park brochure lists the Cassidy Arch hike as strenuous with steep grades and long, steady climbs.  I consider this hike the perfect payoff for a long and steep grade climb.  Our family completed this hike (hubby and I, 10 year old, 6 year old, and 2 year old carried in the backpack) and thoroughly enjoyed the outing.  The hike begins at the Capitol Reef’s Grand Wash.  The shortest access route to the Cassidy Arch trailhead is from the west side of Grand Wash but this does entail driving a short distance on dirt road (Grand Wash Road).   The trailhead for Cassidy Arch veers 670 feet up steep switchbacks carved along the red rock.  It’s not as painful as it sounds because along the way your family will have to stop and take pictures of the amazing views from differing elevations and climb a few rocks along the way.  My 10 and 6 year olds were easily entertained by conquering some of the large sandstone boulders.  I kept our 2 year old safely strapped in the hiking backpack as there are some steep drop-offs not really suitable for a wild toddler!  Once you complete the switchbacks and elevation gain (about ½ mile in to the hike) you walk along sandstone and amazing desert landscapes and soon see Cassidy Arch from a distance.  You can turn around at this point ….. Or if you are brave enough, keep going because you can walk over this arch!  Our brave family continued on (after a serious lecture about walking slow, watching your footing, and most importantly…don’t fall 670 feet off of the cliff face!)  If you or anyone in your family is afraid of heights, turn around now!  My husband and 10 year old son actually laid on top of the arch looking straight down 670 feet.  I was a too scared to take a close-up picture of them.  I was barely able to snap a shot of them lying on the arch from a distance as vertigo kept me farther from the edge.  Families will enjoy the 3.5 mile round-trip hike whether you hike the entire distance or if you just explore at your own pace.

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