Cohab Canyon

Capitol Reef National Park

Escalante - Grand Staircase Area, Utah

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Cohab Canyon


  • View from the south overlook.- Cohab Canyon
  • Cohab Canyon Trailhead.- Cohab Canyon
  • The start of the switchbacks, looking back at the Fruita barn.- Cohab Canyon
  • More switchbacks, almost there!- Cohab Canyon
  • The view from the mouth of Cohab Canyon.- Cohab Canyon
  • Into Cohab Canyon.- Cohab Canyon
  • The trail down the canyon is very flat and pleasant.- Cohab Canyon
  • View from the north overlook.- Cohab Canyon
  • The rock formations in Capitol Reef National Park are astounding.- Cohab Canyon
  • On the trail up to the overlooks.- Cohab Canyon
  • View down the canyon.- Cohab Canyon
  • Beautiful rock formations in Cohab Canyon.- Cohab Canyon
  • "Swiss cheese" rocks.- Cohab Canyon
  • - Cohab Canyon
Overview + Weather
Scenic. Great vistas. Ties into several other trails.
Escalante - Grand Staircase Area, UT
Pets allowed: 
Net Elevation Gain: 
573.00 ft (174.65 m)
Parking Pass: 
National Park Pass
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Total Distance: 
2.90 mi (4.67 km)
Trail type: 
Trailhead Elevation: 
5,381.00 ft (1,640.13 m)
Current Local Weather:
Hike Description

Hike Description

Pro Contributor

Staying in Fruita Campground in Capitol Reef National Park has many rewards, but one is the close proximity of several trailheads leading out of the oasis and into the surrounding canyons. One of the best is the Cohab Canyon Trail, which starts right across the road from the campground entrance. This rewarding hike is challenging at first, but it has tremendous views and scenery as a reward.

From the trailhead the climbing begins with a number of short switchbacks that head straight up the canyon wall, giving increasingly broad views back down to the campground, picnic area, and all of Fruita. After about a third of a mile the mouth of Cohab Canyon is reached and the trail turns sharply left and down the dry canyon bottom. From here the trail is delightful, with amazing and ever-changing rock shapes and colors. In the distance the white and yellow peaks and domes north of Highway 24 are always visible, and the walls of the canyon display an amazing amount of “Swiss cheese” erosion. At the 1-mile point you will encounter a spur going left and up the canyon walls to two viewpoints overlooking the Fremont River, Fruita, and the cliffs and peaks to the northeast and northwest.

After admiring the viewpoints, return to the trailhead to complete a 3-mile there-and-back hike. Alternately, continue down Cohab Canyon to the highway at the Hickman Bridge parking lot or take the Frying Pan Trail to the south which joins with the Grand Wash and Cassidy Arch Trails off the Scenic Drive. Car shuttles to either of these trailheads can make tremendous one-way hikes. Great fresh-baked pies and ice cream can be purchased at the Gifford House gift shop near the trailhead.

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Field Guide + Trail Map

Field Guide + Trail Map

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Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(1 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(13 within a 30 mile radius)

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