Last Updated on September 9, 2020
This fantastic spot is usually missed by people making a Southwest road trip. And if you plan to drive from Kanab, Utah to Page, Arizona or the other way round, why don’t you stop for a two hours hike to admire those formations from another planet? In this short article, we would like to share all the required information to plan your visit to Paria Rimrocks Toadstool Hoodoos.
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What are Toadstool Hoodoos?
The Rimrocks hoodoos are balanced rock formations reminding toadstools – hard darker caprock cover (Dakota Sandstone) creates an umbrella, and lower eroded sandstone formation (Entrada Sandstone) is a stem foundation. On this trail, you will find those formations grouped like mushrooms in the forest.
If you like this kind of rock, you should also consider visiting Wahweap Hoodoos located between Big Water, Utah, and Page, Arizona. Unfortunately, the hike is much longer and not that easily accessible.
You can also try to visit two other groups of Paria Rimrocks. One is above Toadstool Hoodoos, and you can spot some of them from the trail, and another one is below the rim accessible from a different road nearby.
How to get to Toadstool Hoodoos?
The Toadstool Hoodoos hike is located next to the highway US89 in Utah. It’s very close to the other attractions like famous The Wave, Buckskin Gulch, Coyote Buttes, and many others in the Paria River area.
If you are driving from Kanab, Utah just take US89 to the east, and after 44 miles (milepost 19.3), look carefully for the small parking lot on the left side of the road. Be careful because it’s easy to miss it. Driving from Page Arizona is precisely the same, just take US89 to the west, and after 29 miles, look for a lot on your right. Then park the car at the Toadstool Hoodoos trailhead
GPS coordinates for a trailhead are: 37.101310, -111.873169 or N37 06 04, W111 52 23
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Toadstool Hoodoos Trail
Entrance to this trailhead located on the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument area is free of charge and open year-round. You don’t need 4×4 to get here. Trailhead is located next to US Highway 89.
From the parking lot, the hike is pretty straightforward, although there is no one path. You can just try to get to the hoodoos itself then wander among them. Alltrails application might be helpful because not all formations are visible from the path, and many people go right, but there is a lot of hidden gems on your left as well.
If you follow the Alltrails application trail, it will be 1.8 miles long, and elevation gain should be about 140 ft. But if you will be meandering among those incredible hoodoos, it will be longer and more time-consuming. However, we recommend it because those formations are lovely and you can try to find as many of them as you can. Plenty is hidden.
The hike is excellent for all levels of experience, and you can bring your dog, but he must be kept on leash. Please also remember to bring a lot of water because this hike has no shade. You can also avoid doing it in the middle of the day what is an even excellent idea from a photography perspective.
The trail may not be accessible after the rain because the soil is in the area is clay-based.
We have prepared simple Toadstool Hoodoos Trail map for your convenience:
How to prepare for the hike?
The hike is very easy from a technical perspective, so you don’t need to prepare in any particular way to get to Toadstool Hoodoos. But the most important things are to make sure there’s good weather forecast (no rain and no flood risk) because you will be stepping on the clay soil.
The second important factor is to choose not a very hot day because on this hike you will not find any shade. You will be hiking in open terrain exposed to the sun, so please check our hiking tips before you go. The hike is not too long, so a big bottle of water will be enough even on the scorching summer day.
Where to Stay?
As we already mentioned, Toadstool Hoodoos are located close to the U.S. 89 between Page, AZ, and Kanab, UT. So the best places to stay are in those two small towns.
They are an excellent base for exploring the Paria River and Vermillion Cliffs Wilderness. They have great accommodation and restaurants with good food. Our favorite lodging in Kanab is Best Western. If you prefer RV Campground our favorite in Kanab is Hitch-N-Post RV Park.
In Page, we also stayed in the Best Western. They offer good quality at an affordable price. But both in Kanab, Utah and Page, Arizona, you have a lot of other lodging possibilities. You can check prices on hotels.com, which offers great discounts.
Photography Tips & Hints
Paria Rimrocks Toadstool Hoodoos are a paradise for photographers. Different formations can be magnificent when composed with fantastic light. Unfortunately, this is a desert and very often days are sunny and sky flat and blue. So if you have any impact on your planning, try to be here early in the morning or just before the sunset. Sometimes there is a chance for beautiful colors of the sky. It is also a perfect idea to be here during rain or after it, although the trail might be impassable due to the soil nature. Always check the weather forecast before planning a photo session here.
Another great idea is to come here at night and try to catch some milky way or star trails. It looks very well but requires some preparation and bringing at least a tripod. The area has very low light pollution, and the milky way is usually very well visible.
You can also play with depth of field, as you can see in some of our pictures. The idea is to focus on the flowers, grass, or another stone and have toadstools blurred in the background. Use your imagination to create amazing photos. The place has the potential – the rest depends on you.
More inspiration you will find in books:
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