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Front Page » June 16, 2011 » Recreation Focus » Camping in the Castle Valley
Published 1,042 days ago

Camping in the Castle Valley


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By JASON BAILEY
Sun Advocate staff writer

A slight breeze rattles the branches of some nearby trees as the early morning sun rises into the waking sky. The soft smell of pine and the cool morning air invigorate the senses. There's almost no better way to escape the demand and reach of modern life than to go camping and enjoy the peace, tranquility and solitude that nature and the outdoors can offer. The Castle Valley provides some great opportunities for campers of all kinds.

Camping is a great option for many families whose budgets may not allow an elaborate or extravagant vacation getaway to a faraway place, and make no mistake, it is a certain to create memories that will last a lifetime.

One of the best things about camping in the outdoors is that it is an activity that can be had by almost anyone, and the Castle Valley boasts some great campgrounds both large and small - most of which are equipped with fire rings, picnic tables and pit toilets. The area also boasts some great "primitive" sites off the beaten path for those not particularly fond of traditional campgrounds.

Some of these campsites are found in some of Utah's riches mountain landscapes and others are located in rugged desert terrain. Certainly there's something here for everyone.

In the spring and fall, many travel to the deserts found in the lower elevations. Those near Temple Mountain, San Rafael ("Swinging") Bridge and the Wedge Overlook tend to be popular destinations as they are close to some pretty fantastic attractions.

Many people that visit these campgrounds bring their ATVs along and ride many of the designated trails in the area. Some choose to hike the nearby gullies and canyons carved from eons of wind and water.

In the summer months, many flock to higher elevations hoping to find cooler temperatures, to fish, or perhaps for a change of scenery. The myriad of campsites located within Huntington Canyon become flooded with campers, trailers, RVs, as well as tents. Many of these campgrounds do require reservations, however, which must be made well in advance.

Many people also camp in or near Scofield State Park, located about 30 miles northwest of Helper.

The Price Canyon Recreation Area is one place that often does not receive much camping pressure. There are many well-maintained sites in addition to several group sites for large gatherings. Moreover, the nature trail that leads from the campground provides some stunning views from atop the mountain.

Popular Local Campgrounds

  • Avintaquin Campground
    Located 19 miles northeast of Helper. Access via SR-191. Turn onto Reservation Road, then travel west 1 mile.
  • Ferron Creek Campground
    Located approximately 10 miles northwest of Ferron Town. Access from SR-10 via Canyon Road.
  • Goblin Valley State Park
    Located approximately 49 miles southwest of Green River Town. Take I-70 then travel southbound on SR-24.
  • Green River State Park
    Located inside the town of Green River.
  • Huntington State Park
    Located on the north edge of Huntington Town. Access via SR-10.
  • Huntington Canyon (varied)
    There are a multitude of campgrounds in Huntington Canyon (SR-31). Many are by reservation only.
  • Indian Creek Campground
    Located approximately 21 miles northwest of Orangeville. Can be accessed via the Trail Mountain Road from SR-29.
  • Joe's Valley Reservoir Campground
    Located approximately 18 miles from Orangeville (via SR-29) on the west side of the reservoir.
  • Millsite Reservoir State Park
    Located approximately 4 miles west of Ferron on the south side of the reservoir.
  • Potter's Ponds Campground
    Located approximately 12 miles north of Joe's Valley Reservoir. Can be accessed via the "Upper Joe's Valley" road.
  • Price Canyon Recreation Area
    Can be accessed via US Highway 6 approximately 9 miles north of Helper.
  • San Rafael Bridge Campground
    Located near the historic San Rafael ("Swinging") Bridge at the end of the Buckhorn Wash in the San Rafael Swell.
  • Scofield State Park
    Located approximately 30 miles northwest of Helper. Take US-6 northbound then turn left onto SR-96.
  • Temple Mountain Recreation Area
    Located approximately 8 miles northwest of Goblin Valley State Park.
  • Wedge Overlook Campground
    Can be found near the mouth of Buckhorn Wash in the San Rafael Swell, approximately 29 miles southeast of Castle Dale.


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