Goblin Valley State Park

Goblin Valley State Park is one of the weirdest places I’ve ever visited. It’s not a huge park, but it’s really unique and, for photographers, a lot of fun. It’s a bit hard to get to, but worth the trip for a bunch of reasons.

#1: Goblin Valley has a pretty awesome campground. It’s not huge, but there are SHOWERS. And some of the campsites are tucked into cool little canyons. We snagged #12 because this is where we got to pitch our tent.

camping2camping

#2: Even disregarding for a moment the crazy rock formations for which the park is famous, the landscape of Goblin Valley also has some really cool monuments.

monument

#3: Goblin Valley is near Little Wild Horse Canyon, which I’ll write about next–a really beautiful slot canyon.

#4: Goblin Valley is just WEIRD.

The floor is covered with all sorts of weird formations.

valleyfloor

Some of these formations are toadstools.

toadstool

toadstools

Other areas are filled with spires and hoodoos that are sort of like a mini-Bryce Canyon.

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And there are also a bunch of–and, please, don’t let my scientific terminology intimidate you–“blobs” and “lumps.”

valleyfloormonument

I didn’t see a ton of goblin-looking formations, except for these guys.

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Because you can walk wherever you want (except on the formations of course), you can get a lot of very different shots, especially if the sky is cooperating by giving you some clouds.

valleyfloor2

Black and white can be especially fun.

b2

bw

I got really lucky for sunset because the sky was doing stuff in every direction. This meant, of course, that I was running back and forth with my tripod like a crazy person, trying to capture it all.

First, the setting sun started turning the rocks all gold.

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The so-called Three Sisters were framed by these cotton-candy clouds, but I couldn’t get down there in time for a good close-up.

guardians

Then, the Henry Mountains started lighting up.

mountains

But I spent most of sunset photographing Goblin Valley itself.

sunsetfloor

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It really put on an amazing show.

sunsetfloorpano

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