Carmel Canyon Trail in Goblin Valley

The view from the Carmel Canyon trail in Goblin Valley State Park.


The 1.4-mile trail leads to the valley floor, a generally cooler, sandier area of the park compared with the Valley of the Goblins. At times, the trail is hard to follow — keep an eye out for the very occasional signs and more-frequent cairns. The loop has an optional side trail to overlook Molly’s Castle, a broad, flat formation topped with spires of redrock. The short overlook trail is relatively high, about 15 feet, and narrow, but offers a pretty view. More formations come into view as the trail loops back out of the canyon through a dry creek bed. The path becomes more strenuous as it climbs through sandy earth, and also includes a very small slot canyon to climb though.

Getting there: This trail is in Goblin Valley State Park, which has a $7 entry fee per vehicle. From the parking lot, the Carmel Canyon trail is to the left, away from the redrock formations in the Valley of the Goblins.


-- Lindsay Whitehurst

Region: Southern Utah

Destination: Carmel Canyon Trail

Distance: 1.4 miles

Time: 1 hour

Elevation Gain: 99 feet

Dog Allowed: Yes, leashed

Restrooms: Yes

Biking: No

Difficulty: 3


First published 2012-06-06