Little Wild Horse Canyon, San Rafael Swell, Utah

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One of my favorite hikes in Southern Utah is Little Wild Horse Canyon. It’s an eight mile loop when you connect it with Bell Canyon and boasts a slot canyon with honeycomb rock and high, tight walls in some places. I had hiked there before but this time I brought the tots so my expectations were quite different.

Getting There and What to Where

The turnoff to Little Wild Horse Canyon is just two miles outside the entrance to Goblin Valley State Park. Turn right when you see the sign and follow the paved road to the trail head five miles in. The first half mile of the hike is getting to the mouth of the canyon. It’s flat and exposed so bring lots of water. You’ll know when you make it to the canyon itself when you run into this:

There’s not an easy way around this chauk stone and climbing over it would have been impossible without the help of my friend Hannah who went on the trip with me. Since we had the tots and little g in the pack, she scrambled up and then hefted my kids over. 

Rocks, Rocks and More Rocks

Little Wild Horse Canyon offered lots of opportunities for Big E to dig in the sand, throw rocks, and climb the rock walls. Some of the sandstone rocks can even make marks on the red rock walls, however there was a posted sign asking not to do this which we all saw as we walked out of the canyon. 
Little g also enjoyed the rocks, collecting small fistfuls and delivering them to me with a look of pure joy on her face. She did great in the pack, but most enjoyed running around with Big E and Hannah’s son, trying to climb up rocks twice her size.

We followed the trail for about a mile, decent hiking for tots who were already tired from playing with Goblins all morning. We left while it was still fun, to avoid the complaining that accompanies tired, hungry kids. Overall Little Wild Horse Canyon was a fun, flat hike that me and the kids thoroughly enjoyed.

Trail Info

Rating: 3 stars
Difficulty: Moderate, flat for the most part but some scrambling over rocks required
Length: 1 mile, total hike loop is 8 miles
Tips: Drink lots of water and have your tots wear tennis shoes. We often stopped to get pebbles out of sandals.

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Author: Mountain Mom

Hi! I'm Mountain Mom. I live with my husband and three young kids in the mountains near Sundance, Utah. When we're not hiking, biking, skiing and camping, I spend my time doing Mom stuff and reading. Summer of 2016 we traveled over 7,000 miles along the US National Park to Park Highway.

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