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National Parks and Monuments
Capitol Reef National Park



Capitol Reef National Park

A Short Reader

Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   4.49

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    monocline, waterpockets, interesting, sandstone, canyons, surprising, erosion, uplift, banks, reefs, name, among, western, eastern, arches, form
     content words:    Capitol Reef National Park, Capitol Reef, Waterpocket Fold, Colorado Plateau, Reef National Park


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Capitol Reef National Park
By Meg Leonard
  

1     Capitol Reef National Park is in Utah. The park's name has an interesting story. "Capitol" comes from the white Navajo sandstone domes. Settlers thought the domes looked like the capitol building in Washington, D.C. Other settlers who had once been sailors thought the huge ridge in the Earth's crust looked like a reef in the ocean. Reefs in the ocean make it difficult to travel. This rock ridge also made travel difficult. That is why this is called "Capitol Reef."
 
2     The huge ridge is called Waterpocket Fold. It is protected by the park. Waterpocket Fold is a 100-mile long wrinkle in the Earth's crust. It is called a monocline. A monocline has one very steep side. In the rest of the area, the other rock layers are flat. This fold is 7,000 feet higher on the western side than the eastern side. It was formed 50-70 million years ago. The fold was uncovered in the last 15-20 million years. Uplift from the Colorado Plateau and erosion let the fold be seen.

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