Best time to visit Utah

Notom-Bullfrog Road in Utah

This gravel road will take you along the most fascinating scenery in the state. Grab your camera and start an unforgettable road trip

Best time: April–June | September–October

Notom-Bullfrog Road
Notom-Bullfrog Road

The Notom-Bullfrog Road is one of the most scenic backroads in the country. The views that open from the 96.5 km road are just spectacular. It goes parallel to the Waterpocket Fold, a geologic wonder and the main attraction in the Capitol Reef National Park.

This unique nature formation stretches over 160 km from Utah’s Thousand Lake Mountain to the Colorado River. You can also observe the Henry Mountains and Strike Valley along your way. Those who want to hike a little bit may find several trails and popular spots starting from the road, such as Burro Wash, Cottonwood Wash, and Sheets Gulch slot canyons. All of them are located close to each other, which is very convenient for hikers. Often they are filled with water, so travellers have to swim or wade through them.

The surface of the road is natural, sandy and gravel, which makes it sometimes impossible even for 4 WD, especially in wet weather or after recent storms or floods. The best months are considered April through June and September through October. Still, it would be wise of you to check with the visitor centre for the road conditions before you starting your adventure.

Practical info

When is the optimal time to plan a trip to Notom-Bullfrog Road?

The period between April and June or September through October is the prime season to visit Notom-Bullfrog Road. The weather is favorable throughout these months, and the road is accessible, allowing tourists to enjoy their experience. Prior to departure, it's recommended to check the visitor center for road conditions to avoid any issues en route. Show more

What makes Waterpocket Fold unique, and what is it?

Waterpocket Fold is a distinctive geological feature that offers vast insight into the geological history of the area's paleontology. The fold spans for over 100 miles, containing long and narrow ridges that sharply rise from the surrounding terrain. Each ridge denotes a strip of rocks thrust up along a fault line, contributing to its uniqueness. Show more

What is the length of the Notom-Bullfrog Road trail, and how long does it take to traverse it?

Notom-Bullfrog Road trail covers about 96.5 km of distance. The duration required to traverse this distance depends on factors such as vehicle speed, road condition, and the number of stops tourists make. Typically, adventure seekers may need several days to traverse this trail as they explore the various attractions and recreational activities therein. Show more

Is it permissible to swim in Sheets Gulch, Burro Wash, or Cottonwood Wash slot canyons?

Water bodies fill the beds of Sheets Gulch, Burro Wash, and Cottonwood Wash canyons, making them favored trekking paths. Hikers often wade or swim through these canyons. Be cautious as the water's temperature or depth varies with the season and weather, making the experience dangerous for some tourists. Show more

What measures should travelers take when traversing the Notom-Bullfrog Road?

Notom-Bullfrog Road traffic requires a considerable amount of caution due to its natural sand and gravel surfaces, making it challenging to drive during wet weather or floods. Before departure, check the road conditions and weather forecast. Travelers are encouraged to use 4WD vehicles and bring adequate supplies such as foodstuff, water, spare tire, and a first aid kit to ensure safety. Show more

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin