Goblins, Goblins Everywhere!

By Richard M. Romney

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    Most people think rocks just sit around. But there’s a place where rocks seem to come alive. It’s a valley full of strange statues carved by wind and rain in a process called erosion. Cowboys, who discovered the valley in southeastern Utah while searching for lost cattle, said the rock formations looked like ghosts, so they named the place Goblin Valley.

    Heather and Jodi wanted to see what rock formations they could find in the valley, but it was almost dark. They needed a light to help them find their way. Willie, DuShan, and Tommy brought a lantern, and soon they all discovered rocks that looked like the faces of people and animals. One rock even seemed to be wearing a hat!

    The next day the five friends returned to see what Goblin Valley looked like in the sunshine. The strange rock creatures were still there! DuShan found a formation that reminded her of a man with a big nose. On the edge of the valley, the children saw how soft dirt and rock wear away to leave harder sandstone behind. That’s how Goblin Valley was formed.

    These rock formations are in desert country where it is very hot. The heat didn’t stop Tommy from exploring right away, but DuShan needed a rest and found a carved rock that cradled her just right.

    The rest of the afternoon was spent jumping, climbing, and hiking. Jodi discovered a rock that may soon lose its head! Another rock looked like an animal. Can you guess which animal? At the entrance of this valley is a group of rocks some people call the Three Wise Men. Other people call it the Three Ugly Sisters.

    Many other rock creatures guard Goblin Valley, and the formations are constantly, though only gradually, changing.

    Jodi, Willie, Heather, Tommy, and DuShan wanted to stay longer, but the sun was going down. Remembering how scary Goblin Valley had been the night before, they said good-bye to their ghostly buddies.

    Photos by Floyd Holdman