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The Toadstool Trail. The Crown Jewel of Kanab. Or as I like to call it The Worst Trail Ever. Let me give you a quick rundown of the conversation on this hike:
Is this it? Why is this even a trail? This shouldn’t have a trail at all, it doesn’t deserve a trail. This is terrible! Did we miss something? Why does everyone love this so much? That was not worth it.
Then every time someone mentioned the Toadstool Trail after we did it would get to hear all of the above. But I’m not here to say DON’T GO!
Because I know people like this trail. Because I think every trail is worth trying at least once (even if you end up thinking it’s the worst). Because I don’t want to discourage anyone from getting out and hiking.
It’s an easy trail with almost no elevation gain (36 feet) through a wash and over some rocks. I do think it would be a good option for families or anyone looking to stretch their legs and see something (even if not that exciting) on a long drive through southern Utah.
The trail is mostly in a wash with a couple of small rock scrambles. Once you’re closer to the actual toadstools the trail gets a little harder to follow but there are cairns (small rock piles) to guide the way.
It would be hard to get lost at the end of the trail because there’s the giant white rock wall behind you and Big Daddy Hoodoo close to the trail so if you have the time, you could wander around back there a bit more before heading out.
Why I think the Toadstool Trail is the worst
- The trail itself is shockingly boring. Usually walking through washes isn’t the most exciting but if it’s the orange sandstone at least it’s pretty but this was just boring gray clay.
- The hoodoos themselves are less than impressive. There are very few of them (so few I can’t even compare it to Goblin Valley) and they’re not that cool. I will say, the Big Daddy Hoodoo is pretty nice and I did like that one and one other one (in the picture below this section).
- There is FAR better scenery and hikes in the area, like everything listed at the bottom of this post.
Writing this out, it doesn’t make all that much sense about why I dislike this trail so much, but I just do. I like my pictures from it way more than the actual trail itself, but I saw no reason this should be the poster child for Kanab.
I mean poster child literally, too, since it’s on so many posters and ads for Kanab. I mean, it’s closer to Page than Kanab! It just doesn’t make sense to me but that’s fine.
Where is the Toadstool Trail
The Toadstools Trailhead is 30 minutes from Page and 40 minutes from Kanab right on the side of Highway 89. There is a parking area and sign so it’s hard to miss. There are almost always at least a couple of cars parked there. It is technically in Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument.
How long is the Toadstool Trail?
1.8ish miles round trip. It’s an out and back trail, not a loop, but it could be longer if you wander around a lot at the actual toadstool area.
How long do you need for the Toadstool Trail?
An hour should be plenty of time unless you spend a lot of time wandering around at the end of the trail, which would probably make it a better experience.
The best time to hike the Toadstool Trail
Winter. spring, and fall, for sure. There is no shade, it’s totally exposed and it’s just going to be way too hot to do this comfortably in the summer. You’d probably have it to yourself but it would be miserable unless you thrive in extreme heat.
What to bring on the Toadstool Trail
Light Jacket – Because you just never know. Weather can change quickly depending on where you are and if you’ll be in any slot canyons, they can get cool depending on the time of day and season. I usually use my rain jacket for this.
Is the Toadstool Trail in Kanab worth it?
No, not really. I won’t say don’t go because every trail deserves to be hiked and there is a trail out there for everyone. I know this is really popular (it has a 4.2 rating on AllTrails which blows my mind) but just because I really don’t like this trail doesn’t mean you won’t.
Don’t let me not liking it stop you from doing it because, you may love it! I might have liked it more if I hadn’t already seen so much out here but who knows. We even had a discussion on the way back about being so jaded by how much we’ve seen out here which is probably a huge part of not liking this so much.
So, while the trail itself isn’t impressive by any means and the destination was a letdown to me, it’s still worth doing even though I said no, not really. It’s a popular thing to do in Page and Kanab, both.
Other things to do near the Toadstool Trail
- Hike Wire Pass Trail
- Hike to The Nautilus
- Drive Cottonwood Canyon Road
- Relax on Lone Rock Beach
- Hike the Wahweap Hoodoo Trail
- Hike the New Wave Trail in Page
Have you hiked the Toadstool Trail in Kanab? What did you think of it? What do you think is the worst trail ever?