Curtis Bench Trail, Entrada Canyon Trailhead, Goblin Valley, Utah

Curtis Bench Trail - 2.1 miles

Entrada Canyon Trailhead

Side canyons on the Curtis Bench Trail

Side canyons on the Curtis Bench Trail

Round-Trip Length: 2.1 miles
Start-End Elevation: 4,985' - 5,027' (5,059' max elevation)
Elevation Change: +42' net elevation gain (+168' total roundtrip elevation gain)
Skill Level: Easy
Dogs Allowed: Yes
Bikes Allowed: No
Horses Allowed: No
Related Trails:

Curtis Bench Trail - 2.1 Miles Round-Trip

The Curtis Bench Trail runs 1.05 miles south from the Goblin Valley picnic area to a high viewpoint over the Valley of the Goblins, adjacent canyons, and distant Henry Mountains.

This short trail offers a lightly used route into remote parts of the Goblin amphitheater, and unique insight to its eponymous green-grey hued rock layer, the Curtis Formation.

The Curtis Formation caps the Entrada Formation, the preeminent red rock of Goblin Valley. Its greenish color comes from small amounts of glauconite, a mineral containing iron that forms in ocean sediments.

The presence of glauconite corroborates the notion of an ancient inland sea that covered this area 170 million years ago. Ripples in the rock even suggest parts of this area were once a wave-lapped beach:

Begin at the Entrada Canyon Trailhead in the campground picnic area. The Entrada Trail weaves through steep red mounds of quaternary deposits to the Curtis Bench Trail split (.2 miles : 5,051').

The Curtis Bench Trails bends south through open desert to a spur that branches east into the Valley of the Goblins (.85 miles). Look for lizards, jackrabbit, and coyote in the sparse scrub.

The trail levels to an 'end of trail' sign (1.05 miles : 5,027'), where you may continue onto a narrow, elevated outcrop that stands over the goblins and a canyonous maze of quaternary mounds.

Panoramas include the Henry Mountains (south), Wild Horse Butte (back north, by the trailhead), the Three Sisters and Molly's Castle (northeast in open prairie).

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Interactive GPS Topo Map

Key GPS Coordinates - DATUM WGS84

  • N38 34.330 W110 42.723 — 0.0 miles : Entrada Canyon Trailhead - Picnic Area
  • N38 34.200 W110 42.668 — .20 miles : Curtis Bench Trail split
  • N38 33.765 W110 42.648 — .75 miles : Crest on ridge
  • N38 33.725 W110 42.560 — .85 miles : Spur to Valley of the Goblins
  • N38 33.571 W110 42.536 — 1.05 miles : Trail ends at overlook

Worth Noting

  • Cryptobiotic crust is a living ground cover essential to desert life and natural geological processes. Limit travel to established trails, washes, and rock.

  • Side canyons of quaternary deposits are fun to explore, but potentially disorienting. Always carry extra water and sun protection for extended outings.

  • The Curtis Bench Trail offers an alternative route into a lightly traveled corner of the Valley of the Goblins, a geologically diverse route apart from the crowds.

  • Early morning and late afternoon provide the best light for the goblins and Henry Mountains.

  • Be mindful of snakes in rocky areas, and never place your hands or feet where you cannot see them.

Camping and Backpacking Information

  • Camping is permitted in developed areas only. Backcountry camping is not permitted in Goblin Valley State Park.

  • $16 per night : $8 per extra vehicle

  • There are 24 sites and 2 yurts ($60 per night). Yurts sleep 5.

  • Pay showers are available.

  • Backcountry camping is permitted just outside the Park on BLM land, and in the San Rafael Swell. There are also several well-established car camping sites on these lands.

  • Concessions and supplies are very limited in the Park. The closest towns with supplies are Hanksville (34 miles) and Green River (42 miles).

Rules and Regulations

Day Visits:
$7 Per Vehicle
$4 Per Vehicle with a Utah senior 62+
$16 for overnight campground : $8 per extra vehicle

Dogs are permitted on trails and lands within Goblin Valley State Park. Dogs must be leashed and never left unattended, especially in cars.

Directions to Trailhead

Goblin Valley State Park is located 41.9 miles from Exit #149 on I-70 near Hanksville, Utah.

From I-70, exit #149 and turn south on HWY 24 toward Hanksville. Drive 24.8 miles south to the turnoff for Goblin Valley. Drive 5.3 miles west to Temple Mt Junction. Turn left and drive 11.8 miles to the Visitor Center and Entrance Station. Follow signs to the Campground Picnic Area (Entrada Canyon Trailhead) or Observation Point and Valley of the Goblins.

Goblin Valley State Park is located approximately 215 miles from Salt Lake City UT, 50 miles from Green River UT, and 400 miles from Denver.

Contact Information

Goblin Valley State Park
c/o Green River State Park
P.O. Box 637
Green River, UT 84525-0637

435.275.4584 - main line
801.322.3770 - camping reservations
800.322-3770 - toll-free camping reservations

Utah State Parks and Recreation
PO Box 146001
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-601

Bureau of Land Management
125 S. 600 W.
Price, UT 84501

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