Explore the unique Cohab Canyon of Capitol Reef

Tom’s Experience hiking Cohab Canyon:

Hiking through Cohab Canyon was a lot of fun. This trail has many unique areas to wander around and enjoy.

Cohab Canyon Capitol Reef National Park

You can start at either the Hickman Bridge Trailhead or the Cohab Canyon Trailhead in Fruita. The Fruita side is really steep but that is where we started so we could get the elevation out of the way sooner. The trail was so pretty we didn’t mind the quick elevation gain.

Capitol Reef Red Cliffs

You start up some steep switchbacks that over look the town of Fruita and heads to the base of some steep sandstone cliffs. Once you enter the canyon the trail goes downhill toward the Hickman Bridge Trailhead.

The Wives Cohab Canyon

There are numerous side slot canyons you can play in as you hike down the canyon. These canyons are called The Wives and can be completed from the top, ending in Cohab Canyon, by canyoneering through them.

Cohab Canyon Capitol Reef Lookout

Eventually you will meet up to a fork that leads to two different lookouts that are each under a half a mile away from that fork. We headed to the North Lookout and decided we didn’t need to see the other so we headed back to our car from there returning the way we came.

Hiking Capitol Reef Cohab Canyon

If you continue just a little further there is another fork for a trail that leads to the Frying Pan Trail and Cassidy Arch. Dogs are not allowed on trails in Capital Reef that are not paved. There is no park fee to hike this trail from either trailhead.

Tom’s Rating:

Trail Info: There are two trailheads for to enter this canyon and can be done as a through hike or as an out and back. The first is in the town of Fruita near the Fruita Campground. Drive past the Capitol Reef Visitors Center and head towards the campground and find parking somewhere near the Gifford Homestead. The Hickman Bridge Trailhead is about 2 miles east of the visitors center along highway 24.


Hickman Bridge Trailhead:     38.288775,-111.227474

Cohab Canyon Trailhead:    38.282547,-111.246154

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