Valley of Goblins

Round Trip Distance: Open hiking
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation: 8824 - 9260 feet
Cellphone: 0-1 bars
Time: 1 hr.
Trailhead: Goblins parking area
Fee: $13/vehicle
Attractions: Unique geology

Goblin Valley State Park is located off of Utah Highway 24 between Green River and Hanksville. The turnoff to the park is 24 miles south of I-70 and 20 miles north of Hanksville. There are signs at the turnoff for Goblin Valley and each of the main crossroads along the route that make it very easy to find your way. It is about 12 miles from Highway 24 to Goblin Valley. The road is paved all of the way and so are the roads within the park. The campground fills up quickly so it is best to make reservations well in advance if you plan on camping. There are also a couple of camping areas around the Temple Mountain road as well as a few primitive spots along Temple Wash.

Goblins and hoodoos are a common site in the southwest but nowhere will you see as many as in Goblin Valley. And unlike the crumbly hoodoos of clay and bentonite that you find elsewhere these goblins are made from weathered Entrada sandstone which makes them strong enough to climb all over.

While there are 3 main hiking trails in Goblin Valley State Park the valley of the goblins is more of a playground where you can wonder around and explore anywhere you wish. Everywhere you look you will see kids and grownups climbing the goblins or crawling around between them.

The map shows 3 main valleys of goblins that make up the park. Most visitors never make it beyond the first valley so it is pretty easy to get away from the crowds to a more secluded spot.

There is a picnic area near the trailhead but most people were taking their lunch with them and finding a shady place to relax and eat.

The movie Galaxy Quest with Tim Allen and Sigourney Weaver was filmed in part at Goblin Valley. Watching the movie before visiting the park seems to add to the overall adventure.

The prominent mountain near the entrance to the park is called Wild Horse Butte.

There are a couple of areas where there are so many goblins that they become a maze and it would be easy to get separated from your kids.

Goblin Valley State Park is a little ways off of the beaten path but it is good enough to make the trip worthwhile. If you are really into hiking to could easily spend a week in the area and not see all of the cool slot canyons and other spots. Besides Goblin Valley some of those other spots are: Little Wild Horse Canyon, Crack Canyon, Muddy Creek, Wild Horse Canyon and the Eye of Sinbad. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.