Rim Overlook Trail
ElevationAscent: 868' 265 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 6,340' 1,932 m
Low: 5,472' 1,668 m
GradeAvg Grade: 9% (5°)
Max Grade: 19% (11°)
Current trail conditions
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“A steady climb through four steps to a spectacular view at the Rim Overlook.”— Eric Ashley
The four flats before the rim are pleasant interludes during both the ascent and descent. At the top of the climb after the first flat, hikers will notice a close-by exposure of Navajo Sandstone. Following the second flat, the route runs right up a Kayenta ledge at a moderate grade. The way is marked by cairns and the faint remnants of paint. The series of short flats and longer climbs continues for the final mile to the Rim Overlook.
The overlook offers spectacular views to east, south, west, and below. The degree to which the latter can be enjoyed depends upon the viewer’s tolerance of heights, but anyone can take in the more distant vistas without approaching the cliff edge. In any case, pay attention before moving around - it is a long drop to the canyon floor. From there, either continue along the Navajo Knobs Trail or head back to trailhead. During the late afternoon, the return hike provides nearly constant views of the Navajo domes and Fremont River canyon to the east, all nicely lighted with sharp shadows for contrast.
This content was contributed by author Rick Stinchfield. For a comprehensive hiking guide to Capitol Reef National Park and to see more by Rick, click here.