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Directions • Inside Goblin Valley State Park, 50 miles southwest of Green River, off State Road 24. Entry fee is $7 per car.

This isn't the traditional, follow-the-trail hike — and that's what makes it great fun. The awe-inspiring, otherworldly red rocks of the park's main valley are almost entirely open to exploration, within the limits of safety and conservation. Hikers can climb on top of giant boulders, over ridges and, in one case, through a slit in the rock and into a hidden cave where a beam of light pierces down through the ceiling. The hike could be done in an hour or so, or stretched into an afternoon. It's also a great option for children who like to get off the beaten path. Valley of the Goblins

Hiking time • 2 hours

Round-trip miles • 1.4 miles

Elevation gain •131 feet

Difficulty • Easy

Trailhead restrooms • Yes

Dogs allowed • Yes, with leash

Bikes allowed • No