We were breakfasted, dressed, and in the car bright and early the next morning. We set out on our way to Capitol Reef and were making good time until we saw the sign for Goblin Valley. We'd heard about Goblin Valley from Lynnie and Nick and they were actually surprised we weren't going there on this trip. And we weren't planning on Goblin--until the saw informed us that Goblin was only about 16 miles off our route! The decision was made: we'd spend the morning in Goblin.
Goblin Valley was perfect for the kind of hiking our kids enjoy. There were trails you could go on, but there was also a big open valley where you could just go and climb on anything and everything and make your own trail and not get lost because it would have been really hard to get lost.
Lila started in the backpack carrier. At one point, Ryan found her a "Jae Jae spot" and we let her get out to climb and roam. She loved doing her thing and being one of the big kids--and thereafter, asked us to find a Jae Jae spot every time she wanted to get out of the backpack!
The boys started out super timid and didn't want to climb anything. We convinced them to climb a few small formations, which built their confidence enough to climb everything by the end of our morning.
The rock formations in Goblin were super interesting--kind of mushroom shaped and really unlike anything we'd seen before. At one end of the valley, we climbed a high-ish hill (at least higher than the surroundings) and could see across the whole valley of Goblins, which was super cool.
After a few hours of exploring, we were ready to go. We drove to Hanksville, where we enjoyed a crazy delicious lunch at a little dive called Blondie's and visited a convenience store that is built inside of a mountain. While driving the road less traveled through the tiny town, we found a really amazing old water wheel that had been relocated from up in the mountains to this town to preserve it. We got to walk through the building and see how the wheel would have worked to split logs, which was super impressive. In stopping to look at the waterwheel, though, Asher had to turn off his Mobigo game and was the most upset he was all trip!