About halfway between Moab and Torrey, Utah you’ll find two very interesting places to visit. One is Goblin Valley State Park – containing some very strange sandstone structures that look a little like, well, goblins – and another nearly adjacent spot called Little Wildhorse Canyon. The latter is a very tight slot canyon that can make you feel a tiny bit claustrophobic, if you happen to be affected by that kind of thing. It was, of course, formed by water (and debris) flowing rapidly down hill following heavy rains (over thousands of years). Not a place you’d want to be if rain was in the forecast. You might remember the 7 hikers who died near Zion NP a few weeks ago. They were in a similar canyon – and got caught. There’s simply no place to go when the water arrives – and it doesn’t arrive slowly.
Embarrassingly, I almost didn’t get into the darn thing. There’s a fairly high rock formation (5 or 6 feet?) at the bottom end of the canyon that you have to climb to start the hike. I couldn’t get up the stupid thing. Fortunately, another couple came through (from the upper end) and offered to help. And this is the embarrassing part – the guy was 84 years old. So here’s this guy who’s actually quite a bit older than I am pushing my butt up the side of this rock. Very sad. Actually, he was in excellent shape. He and his wife live in Alaska where he walks every day – even in the winter. I don’t know if I believe that, but he sure as hell didn’t look 84. If he was that old, there’s hope!
Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to walk the whole thing. Poor Barbara was waiting for me back in a very warm parking area at the trailhead and probably would have roasted if I’d done the whole thing. But my little hike was enough. The place was nearly empty of hikers and very, very quiet. The good news was that it was also very, very dry.