Goblin Valley was another great find on our recent south-western road trip, continuing our streak of one perfect day after another. “Find,” however, would prove to be the operative word.
We left Bryce Canyon in the morning and headed north-east for about an hour until we reached the Ranger Station just outside of Escalante. Armed with maps and advice we continued on until we turned down a well maintained, but unmarked gravel road, hoping it was the right one. Undaunted, we continued on for almost 20 miles, until we reached our unmistakable destination.
Goblin Valley is aptly named for its many goblin-like hoodoos that are unique and lots of fun to photograph. In addition there are several graceful and smooth, rusty red sandstone arches, carved out through eons of erosion by water and wind. We were lucky, as we had the place pretty well to ourselves and spent several hours wandering about and taking pictures. Our luck would continue when we went searching for a place to stay that night.
The Lodge at Red River Ranch, located near Hanksville, features a three-story great room with rugged, open-beam construction, a massive Anasazi stone fireplace, and a great collection of authentic Navajo rugs and wild west memorabilia. Each of the 15 guestrooms is individually decorated and appointed with more antique furnishings and artifacts. Breakfast the next morning certainly met our own professional standards and, what’s more, our host provided some excellent advice for the next leg of our south west journey… but that’s a topic for an upcoming blog.